SAILING | Barnard Leading Repeat Bid
Published: Monday, November 5, 2012
Updated: Monday, November 5, 2012 23:11
Although the season is still young, the No. 1 Georgetown sailing team is so far excelling in its bid to repeat as national champion. A victory in the MAISA Coed Conference Championship on Oct. 27 and 28 in Kings Point, N.Y., brought it one step closer to its goal.
The coed team, ranked atop Sailing World’s collegiate rankings since the beginning of the season, appears to have kept up its pace despite the loss of Sydney Bolger, last season’s female sailor of the year, to graduation.
This past weekend, individual Blue and Gray sailors participated in the ICSA singlehanded nationals in Long Beach, Calif., a competition that features the top 18 male and female sailors in the country.
The Hoyas were represented by senior Chris Barnard — the reigning male sailor of the year — and freshman Nevin Snow at the event. Barnard finished second, and Snow ended up in eighth as the College of Charleston’s Juan Maegli, a senior, took first place.
Junior Nancy Hagood was the only woman representing the Hoyas, but she also held her own, racing to a fifth place finish.
While those individual results were good, it was the results from the previous weekend that have helped validate the Blue and Gray’s ranking. Georgetown was the favorite going into the Coed Conference Championship, which included the top 18 teams in the conference and is a qualifier for the Fall Atlantic Coast Championship.
The event, also known as the War Memorial Regatta, was split into two divisions. In the A division, Barnard was paired variously with seniors Hilary Kenyon and Leslie Cowen and freshman Sean Golden. In the B division, freshman Nevin Snow split time being paired with senior Tory Lynch and Hagood.
The Hoyas got off to a slow start in the contest, with windy conditions making the races somewhat unpredictable and boding ill for Georgetown. In the A division, Barnard and Kenyon led at the first mark, but they struggled to remain in the top five across all the day’s races.
It was the B division pairing of Snow and Lynch that fared better, showing outstanding consistency and placing in the top five in almost every race. Those mixed results gave the Blue and Gray a 10-point lead over No. 14 Hobart at the event’s halfway mark.
On Sunday, the weather raised an even larger concern, as Hurricane Sandy hastened the start of the day’s 17 races early to avoid further complications.
That was no trouble for the Hoyas, however, since they looked dominant from the onset on the second day. Barnard — racing with Cowen and Golden — finished in the top two of the day’s final eight races.
Snow and Lynch also had a stellar day, winning the first four races of the morning and finishing fourth place or better in the rest. At the end of the afternoon, Georgetown cruised to victory with a score of 124 points.
Finishing behind the Hoyas in second place was No. 8 St. Mary’s with 173 points and No. 13 Navy, which ended the regatta in third place with 205 points. Those scores were high enough for the Blue and Gray to wrap up the victory with three races remaining.
Georgetown’s coed sailing team also was the winner of the Top 9 Regatta at the New York Maritime the same weekend. The event features the top nine schools from the conference but generally contains second-string racers, as the starters compete at War Memorial. The Hoyas eked out a win after battling Navy and St. Mary’s throughout the weekend, only taking control of first place with two races remaining.
Georgetown will look to build on its success so far this season with two regattas next weekend: the Coed Atlantic Coast Championship once again in Kings Point, N.Y., and the Women’s Atlantic Coast Championship at New London, Conn.