Set Sail at Sage

Sage Hill’s sailing team gets revamped with new coaches and protocols to comply with COVID-19 regulations.


Sophomore Brooks Orradre and his sailing teammates prepare for sailing practice. Photo courtesy of Amber Orradre.

Shaan Sakraney

Sailing is one of the few sports that is running this fall season. Sage has Varsity and JV sailing teams that have been practicing this fall. Most importantly, this year, the coaches are both brand new. 

The new varsity head coach, Patrick Shannon, has sailed for a long time. He sailed at Newport Harbor High School, and he continues to sail competitively. He led his sailing team at the College of Charleston to the winning team of the national championship, twice! 

The new JV coach is Ceci Buckingham. Originally from Maui, Hawaii, she was planning on going to Chapman University as a water polo player, but she decided to defer due to COVID-19. She spent her summers in Newport, sailing at the Newport Harbor Yacht Club. Both the coaches are very excited to join the team and help the sailors reach their full potential. 

Sophomore Brooks Orradre, a varsity sailor, said he feels that sailing has become more serious this year, and “this year we got new coaches, which created structure.” 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, several other changes have taken place. Everyone is required to wear masks at all times, instituting very similar rules on campus. Also, temperature checks take place before each practice. Also, due to COVID-19, no official PCISA (Pacific Coast Interscholastic Sailing Association) regattas (races) are allowed to be held. However, our team still is getting lots of practice in the water, in both training and competitive environments. 

“Varsity practice races against Mater Dei, CDM, and Newport Harbor,” said team parent Amber Orradre.

While these races are unofficial, they still give sailors valuable practice in competing. The returning members of the team are also extremely excited about being back on the water. 

Sophomore Carter Bryant said, “The season has started great, and although there won’t be any regattas until 2021, it has been great just to sail again.” sophomore Carter Bryant said. “Sailing is one of the most socially distanced sports there are; however, at the beginning of practice or at the end when we are all rigging the boats, we wear masks to stay safe.”