PHILADELPHIA, Pa. -- The threat of a Northeaster required careful consideration about traveling to Philadelphia this weekend to race in our final race of the fall campaign - the Head of the Schuylkill Regatta. In the end, it was determined safe to travel and after the cancelation of a few races early in the Saturday schedule the organizers got the racing underway (only one of those cancelations, the women's novice 4 event, impacted CGA Rowing).
To call it a beautiful day for racing would be more than a bit of an overstatement, but the water was better than we see on the Thames River many days, walking through mud is part of being at regattas on a wet day, and we can deal with a little rain and wind - we are CGA Rowing!
Two CGA men's fours started the day for us - one four was all freshmen, including Sean Hunter at Coxswain, Brian Golliher at stroke (Brian is a walk-on that has made excellent progress this fall and I look forward to seeing how far he can climb in the spring), Eric Green, Raphael Grieco, and Brennan Suffern.
Because of a mistake, the bow numbers were mixed up and the all freshmen boat with Sean at the controls raced with bow number 134 while CGA's second four, stroked by sophomore Matthew Pindell, raced with bow number 139. Both boat has good races and finished 15th (bow 139) and 19th respectively in a field of 37 boats.
The women's four was next on the course with sophomore Mary Decker as coxswain and Marissa Marsh, Katherine Long, Clara Hay, and Sarah Jacobsen (all who would also race in the 1V eight later in the day) finished 26th out of 43 in a race dominated by the University of Pennsylvania who took both first and third.
After a long wait into the afternoon and an excellent lunch cooked by the parents and friends of CGA Rowing, we were ready for the big boats. We had two eights in both the men's and women's club championship eight and we had a strong showing. The men's boats placing 7th (behind several D1 schools including 3 boats from the USNA) and 24th out of 40 boats. Captain Ian Hopper noted, "We had good power and good swing. We are ready to work hard in winter training and will be ready for the sprints in the spring."
The women placing 11th (three seconds ahead of West Point) and 35th out of 50 boats. As captain junior Marissa Marsh noted, "This race was a great wrap up for the end of the season. Our 4/c rowers (there were six 4/c in the varsity boat) helped us put together two strong eights."
I agree with captain Andrew Niedbala statement that, "The depth of the team is incredible." (certainly the best it has been in the past 4 years).
Now it is time to put away the shells and break out the ergs as the captains lead the team into winter workouts. It is about 120 days until our Return to the River Dinner (Saturday 23 February 2019 - hope to see folks there) and then we are back on the water, getting ready to return to Clemson for spring break, and into the spring racing season!
Senior Kristen Sharp's comment will close the final article covering the fall racing season - "We have huge expectations and excitement for the spring season and we are going to work hard through the off season to get ourselves there."
Complete results are available at:https://www.herenow.com/results/#/races/20569/results