GALLOWAY, N.J. — Two Stockton University varsity eight boats were named after a local rowing legend and coach, and a long-time supporter of the sport last week.
The official naming ceremony held at the Atlantic City Boathouse on Wednesday, Sept. 25 named the two boats after Stan Bergman of Ventnor and former state senator William “Bill” Gormley of Margate.
Bergman said good coaching is about bringing out the best in everyone.
“It’s all about the athletes,” he said. “I hope the boat goes fast and you have fun, grit and perseverance.”
Bergman coached for 22 years at Holy Spirit High School and the University of Pennsylvania, he also coached the Viking Rowing Club.
The Bergman boat was donated by Horizon Blue Cross/Blue Shield of New Jersey.
The Gormley boat was a surprise for the local attorney, whom President Harvey Kesselman said has been a tireless supporter of rowing in Atlantic County.
“He has spent the last 25 years behind the scenes,” Kesselman said.
Stockton rowing coach John Bancheri said interest in rowing has quadrupled since he arrived last year. “We are headed in the right direction, he said.
Stockton President Harvey Kesselman hopes the expanded rowing program encourages local rowers to stay in the area and row at the university.
The women’s rowing team placed third this year in the Mid-Atlantic Rowing Conference Championships, their best finish ever, and also finished third in the DIII Varsity Eight at the Dad Vail Regatta. They were recently accepted to row in the Women’s Collegiate Eights at the 2019 Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston on October 19 through the 20.
Six more boats were named on Saturday, Sept. 28 for coach Bob Kerstetter, Ray D’Amico ’81, Stockton trustee Madeline Deininger ’80, Stockton First Lady Lynne Kesselman, ’82 Stockton founding trustee Elizabeth B. Alton, and her husband R. John Alton.
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