Two Old Lyme high school alum training for Japan Olympics

Japan 2020

OLD LYME, Conn. (WTNH) — Old Lyme’s Austin Hack was in the stroke seat at the World Championships two years ago, which earned the team their spot in the Olympics. Fast forward to June 2021 when he is now joined by fellow Lyme-Old Lyme high school alum Liam Corrigan.

“It really is sort of phenomenal and I think it says a lot about the town and I’m certainly proud of the town for that,” said Corrigan.

“Yeah I agree I think it’s so special,” added Hack.

“To have two students from the same high school I think is almost unheard of,” said Superintendent of Schools Ian Neviaser.

Hack graduated from Lyme-Old Lyme in 2010 and Corrigan in 2015. But they did have the same basketball and rowing coach credited for at least leading Liam to the water.

“I think he knew that I was tall, probably wasn’t going to make it too far in basketball and convinced me to come out for the rowing team,” said Corrigan.

Coach Louis Zubek certainly saw crew potential in Corrigan.

“This is crazy I saw Austin in Liam as soon as I saw him,” said Zubek.

But he says both were talented athletes in basketball and crew.

“Their build is perfect for the sport to be successful but in high school they were just so unique in how mature they were, how smart they were, how driven they were,” said Zubek.

Hack is already pretty much a rowing legend in town. In the Old Lyme Rowing Association’s boat house there is a boat named after him commemorating his first trip to the Olympics back in 2016.

Tokyo will be his second.

“Having gone to one Olympics came in fourth I know that that was pretty heartbreaking,” said Hack.

Heartbreak they hope to avoid as they train with the U.S. Olympic Men’s 8 in San Francisco even taking hot yoga to prepare for Tokyo’s heat.

“It’s a lot of work and it is rewarding when it pays off,” said Corrigan.

A source of pride for this shoreline town and beyond.

“We’re hearing from people who graduated years ago about how wonderful this is,” said Neviaser.”

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