Sam, a junior at the University of Washington, began rowing in 6th grade. He said his mom saw that Sammamish Rowing Association (SRA) had middle school summer camps for rowing and he claims this was her way of getting him out of her hair. Despite fearing falling into the water, Halbert fell in love with the sport quickly and spent his middle and high school years rowing for SRA.
“Rowing,” Halbert says, “has helped me realize that one needs variety in life. Put everything you have into practice, but as soon as practice is over, don’t stress about rowing or ergs but instead play an instrument, video games, or hang out with friends. This has helped me when having to perform at a D1 and World rowing level.” With that focus on balance and hard work, Halbert has been able to perform very well at the D1 level. His favorite rowing memory was his first championship race in the Varsity at University of Washington that they ended up winning. He said, “It was the UW vs. CAL duel and we hadn’t won it in 3 years in the varsity, so it was a great win for the team and set a new tone for the season.”
One of his favorite SRA memories was winning regionals at Brentwood his junior year. “It was a new lineup that we had never tried out before, but we pulled off a win and went on to win regionals,” he said
Looking ahead, Halbert still has his junior and senior years to finish at Washington. He was excited for what he might be doing a few years down the road, but was still focused on his time with the Huskies. “In the future I may go for the Olympics or at least race in other world level events. In the meantime, the team is focused on the winning the IRA in the Varsity event.”
Sam was and still is an incredible part of the Sammamish community. Watching him row himself into record books has been nothing but amazing for our organization and supporters to witness. While he may represent the Huskies in his purple and gold we are proud that he once wore the Sammamish red, navy, and white.