With another impressive season under its belt, Georgetown sailing continues to prove itself as one of the best athletic programs on the Hilltop. As a team that featured four All-American members last season, a No. 1 national ranking this season and a U.S. Sailing Team member in junior Haddon Hughes, Georgetown sailing does not face the question of whether it is the best athletic team in the school, but of whether it is the best in the country.

The ceiling seems limitless for Georgetown sailing going into the spring, as the team regains its two best sailors who were abroad this semester, juniors Rebecca Fung and Campbell D’Eliscu. As the Hoyas seek a national championship, they will ride on the successes of both their returning, seasoned All-Americans, including senior Meaghan MacRae, and younger sailors such as freshman Carly Broussard. If the winds are right, the freshmen and sophomores step up and the seniors lead the way, the Blue and Gray is primed for a title run in the spring.

Sailing is currently the only Georgetown team to achieve a No. 1 ranking earlier this fall. The team also had to maintain this top spot as it raced over three times every week, consistently putting its ranking to the test. The team travelled from Charleston to Florida to Boston to New York, fighting against many of the best sailing teams in the country before falling to the No. 4 spot by season’s end.

Georgetown recorded seven total first-place finishes as a team this season, with individual first-place finishes by Hughes and senior Lola Bushnell.

Although the fall season did not end how Head Coach Mike Callahan imagined, with no top-five finishes at the Atlantic Coast Championships, the return of upperclassmen and warmer winds in the spring bring hope for greater success. Unlike many northeastern schools such as Yale and Brown, the Hoyas tend to sail much better in warmer weather and in higher winds, ultimately giving the Blue and Gray an edge over its opponents in the spring.

Georgetown will also continue to enjoy the leadership of Callahan, who has coached in this spotlight before. Coming off a run for a national championship last spring, Callahan has the coaching skills and leadership necessary for another title push. As a former Team USA sailor, he has the experience   to lead the Hoyas to another trophy.

No other team on campus is as consistent as Georgetown sailing. During the team’s dominant streak in recent years as a perennial top-five ranked squad, the team has maintained a strong recruiting class, prominent upperclassmen sailors and continued victories, setting up a bright future for the Hoyas. Although the team sails on the windy tides of the Potomac, Georgetown sailing has continued to succeed as the best program on the Hilltop.

Loosen the ropes and set sail with the new pride of Georgetown athletics — your 2017 Hoya sailors.

Sean Haggerty is a freshman in the College.

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