This post was written by Hatchet reporter Nora Princiotti.
This weekend’s Atlantic 10 Championships performance seemed like Groundhog Day for the women’s rowing team. Just like last year, they finished just out of reach of a conference title. And just like last year, head coach Eric Carcich took home Coach of the Year hardware.
The third-place tournament showing was powered by a gold medal performance by the Varsity 8 Satuday in Pennsauken, N.J. But the true trophy was out of reach after a solid season by GW, as Rhode Island took the crown.
“Today was a great day,” Carich said in a release. “This morning started off with all boats advancing to the Grand Finals. They did a great job and did exactly what they needed to in order to be in the mix for the title this afternoon.”
Rhode Island’s 49 points helped them win the women’s title, and with it, the conference’s first-ever automatic bid to the NCAA Championship. Massachusetts finished second with 45 points, followed closely by GW with 44.
Twenty-seven of the women’s points were earned by the Varsity 8’s dominating performances on the day. The V8 was in full command in the morning heat, finishing the 2,000 meters on the Cooper River in 7:01.79, the fastest time recorded during the morning session.
The V8’s win was no less convincing in the Grand Final, where GW made a move at the 500-meter mark to take the lead, and never gave it back. The Colonials crossed the finish line at 7:05.06, with open water separating them from silver medalist Rhode Island, who finished in 7:09.23.
“In my 19 years of coaching, the Varsity 8′s performance in the Grand Final was one of the best races I have ever seen,” Carich added in the release. “They were in complete control and maintained their composure the entire length of the course. It was a dominating and very impressive performance. A really enjoyable race to watch.”
This was the first time that the Colonials had captured a Varsity 8 gold since 2006.
The JV8 and Varsity 4 each earned spots in the Grand Finals with second place finishes in the morning heats. The JV8 navigated the course in 7:23.41, trailing winner UMass by 4.2 seconds. The Varsity 4 crossed the finish line in 8:17.48, second only to Rhode Islands’ 8:12.33.
The JV8 would go on to finish fourth out of six crews racing in the Grand Finals with a time of 7:34.11. Massachusetts (7:21.57), Rhode Island (7:25.35) and Temple (7:29.30) topped the Colonials in a hard fought race.
The Varsity 4 finished fifth overall at 8:46.53.
Men’s rowing concludes regular season play
The men’s rowing team also competed this weekend, ending their regular season against Navy and Columbia.
The Freshmen 8 won its seventh race in a row on Sunday, defeating Navy by 3.3 seconds with a time of 6:11.50
The Varsity 8 started strong, but dropped behind Navy and Columbia in the second half of the race to finish third after 6:09.20. Columbia won the highly contested race in 5:57.20 with Navy following at 6:01.90.
The Lions also took the JV8 race in 6:08.10, while Navy pulled their way into second place in 6:11.30, followed by the Colonials at 6:49.60.
The men will take next weekend off before travelling to Worcester, Mass. for the Eastern Sprints on May 19.