CREW Men’s Novice Four Takes First By Erin Reilly Hoya Staff Writer

Georgetown made a strong showing all around on Saturday at the Head of the Schuylkill in Philadelphia, and showed improvement going into the Princeton Chase on Sunday, narrowing the margin of defeat among comparable crews.

The only first place finish on the weekend came Saturday from the men’s novice four. They finished 20 seconds ahead on second place University of Pennsylvania. Last week the novice men’s four finished eighth out of 31 at the Head of the Charles.

The four also raced in the Youth Four Division in Boston, against other high school and club crews, whereas in Philadelphia this weekend, they raced against other college novice crews. This schedule adheres to the ideal of fall rowing, to identify good techniques and good line-ups and steadily improve from week to week.

“Sunday was much better for us than Saturday,” junior Spencer Scheffy said of his varsity crew.

“Saturday we had bad conditions and a bad warm up. It was a tough regatta no matter how well prepared we were, but we learned a lot both technically and physically about how to row a race,” junior coxswain Alex Taft said. “Our first 2000 meters on Sunday was the best rowing we have had all year. We tested ourselves and found we could do a lot more than we thought.” The eight he was working with is relatively young, containing only two seniors and a few juniors.

The men’s `A’ eight finished seventh in its division in the Schuylkill with a time of 13:05.00 while the `B’ boat finished twentieth about 50 seconds later. The `A’ boat finished behind fourth place Temple who had a time of 12:46.49. On Sunday, the same Georgetown `A’ eight finished ninth out of 21 in the Princeton Chase behind Temple by only 11 seconds as opposed to 18 seconds the day before.

“Its all about improvement and seeing what you can do,” Taft said.

Also on Saturday at the Head of the Schuylkill, the men’s varsity four finished eighth out of 29 in a time of 15:28.08. Boston University, Syracuse and Boston College comprised fifth, sixth and seventh in that division.

The novice men’s eight did well despite never having rowed together as an eight in practice. They placed 14th with a time of 14:37.71, falling right in between Hobart (13) and Villanova (15). The `B’ novice men’s eight placed 31st in that division.

The `B’ novice women’s eight also placed 14th ahead of Villanova, University of Connecticut and Saint Joseph’s University. The `A’ novice women’s eight placed 18th in the same division and the “Hoya Boat Club” eight finished 21st.

The varsity women, stricken with injury, illness and other complications, faced scarce participation and therefore makeshift line-ups in Saturday and Sunday’s races.

“The eight was split into two fours because we didn’t have everyone from our eight rowing,” sophomore Caitlin Gibbons said.

The two fours did well however, placing fifth and eighth in their division on Saturday.

At the Princeton Chase on Sunday, the varsity women raced two open eights and they placed nineteenth and twenty-fourth out of 34. The “A” boat finished just ahead of Virginia’s `C’ boat and Georgetown’s `B’ eight edged out the Columbia `B’ boat.

The women’s open four came in toward the end of the pack with a time of 18:49.32, defeating Columbia but coming in just after Villanova.

This fall, the lightweight men have not made the strong of a showing they demonstrated last spring. Five rowers and the coxswain from the No. 2-ranked eight graduated in May. On Sunday the lightweight men raced two eights and three fours.

The eights placed 18th and 23rd out of 25 while Yale, Princeton, Navy and Havard rounded out the top four in that division. The fours came in all in the bottom half of their division, while Princeton, Harvard and Yale took one, two and three respectively.

The Hoyas will look to improve as they continue to discover their strengths and find techniques that work.

On Sunday the novice crews face off against the University of Virginia in a scrimmage race. The varsity crews race again Sunday, Nov. 11 at the Belly of the Carnegie in Princeton, N.J.

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