Senior and Stanford commit Emily Moline is back for her third season as a member of Loyola’s crew team. As a junior, Molins — a Wilmette resident and St. Francis Xavier graduate who went to Woodlands Academy in Lake Forest as a freshman — rowed on the top boat that took third place in May at the Scholastic Rowing Association of America’s national championship regatta on Cooper River in Camden County, New Jersey. Molins sister, Sophie Molins, is a sophomore rower at Loyola.
MAROON & GOLD: How did you get your start in crew?
EMILY MOLINS: I played lacrosse until about the sixth grade, but I had to stop because of medical reasons. I wasn’t cleared for a contact sport for a couple of years. When I got to high school, I wanted to do a sport, but I didn’t want to run. My dad [Tom Molins] rowed [at Georgetown], so I knew a little bit about it.
M&G: Was he excited you chose crew?
EM: He tried to sway me away from it. It’s a tough sport. It’s kind of funny now. A lot of his best friends are guys from his team in college. It’s probably the best decision I’ve made in high school. I know he’s proud of me.
M&G: What do you like most about the sport?
EM: It’s very competitive. It’s a great way to push yourself physically, but it’s also a team sport. You’re in a boat with eight other people with the same goal. You have to work in unison with one another. It’s pretty cool when it all comes together.
M&G: Rowing requires a lot of individual strength and technique. How important is chemistry to the team’s success?
EM: We always talk about accountability and awareness of what you are doing as it relates to your teammates. We have big personalities on our boat, but we all get along. We have fun, but we are all serious about what we are doing.
M&G: You’re on the 1V boat, which is saved for the best rowers. Where do you sit, and what is your job?
EM: I basically sit in front of the coxswain. I set the the rhythm of the boat. I was moved into that position last spring. I love it. There’s a lot of pressure that comes with it, but it’s a challenge I enjoy.
M&G: Do you and your dad talk about rowing?
EM: Yes. It’s something we probably talk about the most. He gets a kick out of it. It’s fun having a shared activity.
M&G: What advice has he given you about the sport?
EM: He told me there are two types of sports. There are game sports and pain sports. Rowing is one of the ultimate pain sports. It’s a sport about who can handle the pain and embrace it.
M&G: How has crew translated into other aspects of your life?
EM: You have to be relentless to row. Sometimes, you don’t want to do it, but you do it. You have to roll with the punches and put forth your best effort to be successful. It’s the same with an AP Chemistry test. Even though it’s hard, you do your best to prepare for it.
M&G: Rowing seems like a total body workout. What exercises do you do?
EM: In most people’s head, they think rowers have broad shoulders and a strong upper body. That’s true. But the strongest muscles in your body are your glutes. Your arms come into play about halfway through the stroke, but it’s crucial to have that drive in your legs.
M&G: Where is your favorite place to row?
EM: Saratoga Springs, New York. We go there every Halloween weekend. It’s beautiful, and it’s fun.
M&G: What’s highlight of your career so far?
EM: Probably [the Midwest Scholastic Championship in Nasport, Ohio] in May. We beat New Trier. We all jumped into the water after it. It was super exciting.
M&G: Everybody from last season’s boat is back. Are you are better than you were at this point last year? What are the team’s goals?
EM: We are miles ahead of where we were last year. I mean, winning the national championship is the ultimate goal. The bar is set higher than it was last year, and it pushes us to be better.