Colonials Oarsmen Hang On To Defend McCausland Cup in Season Opener
March 30, 2009
WASHINGTON, DC - The George Washington Men's Rowing Team opened its 2009 racing season on the Potomac River this past Saturday with a narrow win in the Varsity Eight over the the visiting University of Pennsylvania. Though GW held a lead through much of the 2000 meter race, it was never by more than about four or five seats (approx. 1/2 boat length). Coming into the last 350 meters of the race, the Quakers mounted a furious charge, falling just 1/10 of a second shy of catching the Colonials - a margin of less than a foot. The victory meant that George Washington retains possession of the McCausland Challenge Cup.
"Early season racing is probably as much about gaining experience as it is about the wins and losses," stated GW head coach Greg Myhr. "That said, I'm thrilled we were able to hang on and get some experience winning - it's pretty important to start to know what that feels like. That was really close racing from both teams - one of the more composed efforts I've seen here. We've got plenty of work to do, as does every team at this time of year, but I don't doubt our guys ability or willingness to rise to the challenge."
In the 2nd Varsity Eights race, the Quakers jumped out to an early lead and then extended it to nearly a boat length by the 1000 meter mark of the race course. GW took several moves to try to push back in, but Penn countered and maintained the boat length lead through the finish line. Similarly, in the Varsity Fours event, Penn grabbed a commanding lead early on and controlled the race down the course, winning by over 7 seconds.
In freshman racing, the Colonials Freshman Eight fought a very hard race, but was outmatched by the Quakers, who won by just under five seconds. "Penn is a very good crew," said Myhr. "Our guys gave them a hard fight all the way down the course, but in the end, were a bit out gunned." The Freshman Fours race was different story. GW raced an 'A' and 'B' entry, and both fours took early leads on Penn and opened the margin up through the race to both finish in front of the Quakers. GW 'B' added a bit of drama in front of the finish line crowd when the number 2 man's oar popped out of the oarlock several strokes from the finish line. GW maintained its composure, however, and got across the line without further incident.
Full Results at: http://www.row2k.com/results/resultspage.cfm?UID=359705&cat=1
Next up for the Colonials: GW visits Saint Joseph's on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia, Saturday, April 4th. Racing will run from 11:00 AM until 12:30 PM.