The Coast Guard Academy men's crew heads into the spring season after a solid close to the Fall Season and bring with them significant physical gains earned over the winter months. They take to the water with a relatively young squad led by four seniors including captain Ben McKeathen.
The Bears have an aggressive schedule including the best in their league as well as the addition of Brown University on April 5th. In addition to their regular end of season championships, New England Championships and the ECAC National Invitational, the team will be looking to return to the Dad Vail Regatta for the first time since before the millennium.
Coast Guard returns several rowers to the Varsity 8 led by seniors McKeathen, Cole Gingrich, Brendan Magnuson and Jake Taylor along with juniors Luke Carani, Sean Murphy and coxswain Peter Driscoll.
The Bears do however have a number of younger rowers that will push these upperclassman during the season.
"Every year brings new challenges and this year is no exception." says first year head coach Colin Regan. "I have a lot of confidence in my guys and they have earned a tremendous amount of confidence in themselves and their fitness. Overall, I have challenged them a lot and each man has done a tremendous job responding positively and taking ownership of his progress. "
Regan was very happy with the work ethic shown from his team during the winter months, a time that the coaching staff is not present for the work outs. "This winter was very productive with everyone seeing personal improvement over previous years. Given coaches are not present in practice for the majority of the winter months, training is completely a reflection of individual and collective will to get better. "
Coast Guard took a trip to Clemson, South Carolina over Spring Break to get prepared for the upcoming season and Regan likes what he saw from his team during the training sessions.
"We had a solid training trip to Clemson and where we began the work of learning how to best apply our physiological gains to the boat, which for most teams, is the greatest challenge. One of the defining moments of our trip, however, was hiking to the top of Mount Mitchell in North Carolina. At 6,683 ft, it's the tallest peak east of the Mississippi. We gained about 3,600 ft in 5.5 miles, which made for a great challenge that all guys met with equally great enthusiasm. We are looking forward to bringing the spirit that drove us through the winter and up that mountain to the line every Saturday."
The Bears open their season at Wesleyan in Middletown, Connecticut on March 29th.
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