- Oyster Bay-East Norwich Schools
OBHS Athletes Commit to Div. I Collegiate Sports
Alina Kelly, left, and Rachel Kowalsky sign letters of intent to play collegiate sports.
Two Oyster Bay High School senior-athletes have committed to playing Division I sports at the collegiate level next year.
Varsity crew member Alina Kelly will wear orange and blue for the Bucknell Bison women’s rowing team and varsity fencer Rachel Kowalsky will don blue and white for Duke University Blue Devils’ women’s fencing team.
Mr. Kevin Trentowski, Director of Athletics, Physical Education and Health, honored the athletes in a small, socially distanced ceremony before family members, coaches and staff members where he outlined the students’ high school athletic careers and praised those who contributed to their success.
“These students are a testament to the hard work and commitment that they, and their families, put into the sport,” Mr. Trentowski said. “They are models of excellence both on and off the field and will be assets to the teams and to their universities next year. We know the skills they learned from their coaches at Oyster Bay High School will serve them well as they move onto the next level of their athletic careers.”
Alina, who plans to study business at Bucknell University’s Freeman School of Management, began her rowing career with the Oyster Bay crew team, which competes through Sagamore Rowing. As a freshman, her initial success in racing was taking first place in the eight-person scull and doubles boats at the New York State Championships and the snowflake regatta, respectively. In her sophomore year, Alina placed high in the rankings at many regattas. Her biggest triumph was earning first place in the U15/U17 National Championship. Prior to her junior year, Alina participated in the US Rowing U19 Olympic Development Program Camp in Saratoga, New York and Sarasota, Florida. In her junior year, she rowed with Oak Neck Rowing Academy and accumulated top three finishes, including second place at the Tail of the Fish Regatta and Head of the Schuylkill Regatta.
Rachel competed in her first season of fencing as a freshman at Oyster Bay High School. Her season record of competing in Epee was 15-13. In her sophomore year, Rachel was number one in the Epee standings and had a season record of 26-3. Rachel was Nassau County Champion of the Individual Tournament. She earned All Long Island and All County First Team honors. During the summer of 2019, Rachel was a Gold Medal winner in Epee, winning first place in the Maccabi Games in Hungary. Her contributions helped lead her team to the world championship title. As a junior, Rachel once again finished the season in number one Epee standings, with a season record of 20-0. She successfully defended her gold medal as a Nassau County Champion and earned All Long Island and All County First Team honors, and Newsday All Long Island. Rachel has been named Team Captain and Team MVP of the fencing team. In addition to fencing, Rachel also competed in tennis and badminton, and earned All-Conference honors in tennis in 2019.
Both Rachel and Alina are stars in the classroom as well, challenging themselves with rigorous course loads and earning honors including Advanced Placement (AP) Scholars of Distinction and AP Scholar with Honor, respectively. Rachel was also among the first class of students to be inducted into the Oyster Bay High School Academic Wall of Fame for high achievement on AP exams.
Varsity crew member Alina Kelly, left, and varsity fencer Rachel Kowalsky, committed to Division I teams at Bucknell University and Duke University, respectively. Pictured with them are Oyster Bay High School Principal Ms. Sharon Lasher and Athletics Director Mr. Kevin Trentowski.
Rachel with fencing club coach Mr. Sergey Danilov and OBHS fencing coach Mr. John Bruckner.