Men's crew advances to semifinals at ECAC Championships

Men's crew advances to semifinals at ECAC Championships

WORCESTER, MA – The men’s varsity crew raced to a second place finish in their preliminary heat in day one at the ECAC National Invitational to advance to tomorrow’s semifinal races.  A tailwind favored the earlier women's heats with fast times, but the men’s crews raced into a southeast headwind which made for slower times.  

The men’s varsity eight event featured four heats with the top three boats in each heat advancing to the semifinals.  The first heat was a tight race with top ranked Virginia squeezing out a win over Ithaca.  WPI and UNH battled for the third and final qualifying spot with WPI taking third by .273 seconds.  The top four boats finished within 2.2 seconds of each other.   In the second heat, perennial New England power Trinity College separated itself from the field and took an easy win over Cal San Diego and Wesleyan.  Orange Coast, Marist, and Bates advanced to the semifinal heat from the third heat.

In the fourth and final heat of the day, Williams, seeded second in their heat, lined up with top ranked Michigan, UC-Davis, Hobart, UMass, and St. Lawrence.  Hobart moved out to an early lead, but Michigan charged back to take the lead, with Williams moving into second, overlapping with Michigan at the 1,000 meter mark and on the bow ball of Hobart and UC-Davis.  The third and fourth place boats took advantage of the southeast headwind that was hampering the boats in lanes 1 and 2 made a late charge in the third 500 meters of the race to force a competitive and close final 500 meters of the race, but Michigan and Williams held first and second place, three seconds apart, with UC-Davis taking the final qualifying spot, about a second behind Williams and only 0.2 seconds over Hobart. 

Head Coach Peter Wells was pleased with the efforts of the men’s team this season and happy with their race this afternoon. “This season has been about meeting challenges.  Last year we couldn’t break through the challenges and we never improved and didn’t get to a different level.  Before the Little Three’s this year [against Wesleyan], I told them that this was a pivotal race and that they had a chance to break that barrier and they did. This ECAC race is a big deal for them, every race is absolutely brutal.  They were a little tight today because they were nervous about making the A and B semifinal, but tomorrow we have a great opportunity.  The attitude of the program is great, the energy of the men’s team has been great and good things have come their way because they have a great attitude.”

Tomorrow the men will race in lane three against Orange Coast, UVA, Bates, WPI, UC-San Diego in their semifinal.  The men’s 2V, 3V, and novice boats will race tomorrow in morning preliminary heats and afternoon final races. 

Complete Results