Women's Rowing Turns in Solid Performances Across the Board at EAWRC Sprints
Courtesy: Columbia University Athletics/Gene Boyars
CAMDEN, N.J. — Columbia Women's Rowing closed its 2010-2011 season in fine fashion, with solid performances in all five of the events the Lions entered in the Eastern (EAWRC) Sprints. The varsity eight turned in the best showing, rebounding from a tough opening heat that cost it a berth in the Grand Final, to win the Petite Final by more than a full boat length. The varsity four B finished third in its heat and advanced to the Grand Final.
Hopes were highest for the varsity eight, which had been seeded sixth following impressive victories over Northeastern and Tennessee in the closing weeks of the regular season. A sixth seed indicated that the coaches who voted in the seeding poll expected Columbia to reach the Grand Final.
The Lions, however, found themselves in a tough opening heat, with the likes of Princeton, ranked first in the nation, Dartmouth and Syracuse.
Sure enough, the Tigers sprinted out to a large lead, and held it easily. Columbia felt it was in good position behind Princeton, only to see surprising Dartmouth turn on the jets.
"You've got to credit to Dartmouth, they're a fast boat," head coach Melanie Onufrieff said, after the Big Green overtook her Lions and claimed the coveted second spot in 6:39.62, 6.5 seconds better than Columbia.
"We had a good performance," she said. "With a better seed …" Although Columbia had beaten Cornell during the season, the voters consistently ranked the Big Red higher.
Stung by the opening heat loss, which cost the Lions a berth in the Grand Final, Columbia reacted strongly. "We bounced back in the Petite Final in the afternoon," the coach said. The Lions defeated a host of strong crews in the Petite, including runner-up Northeastern, Penn, and Syracuse. "We won convincingly," Onufrieff said, with obvious pride in her voice. "We showed them how it's done."
The second varsity rowed well in its Petite Final, finishing third, ahead of Navy, Syracuse and George Washington. The third varsity eight, made up of first-years new to the Eastern Sprints, came back from a poor opening heat with a solid Petite Final row. They were especially impressive in beating a higher-seeded Navy eight by seven and a half seconds.
The varsity B four, seeded fifth, beat its seed by one when it took fourth in the Grand Final, 2.28 seconds better than Radcliffe (Harvard) and 13 seconds better than B.U.
Its counterpart, the A varsity four, expended itself in a valiant try for first place in the opening heat. Alas, the Lions had little left in the afternoon, and placed sixth of six in the Petite Final.
The Sprints concluded Columbia's season.
The results:

Eastern Sprints (EAWRC)
Sunday, May 15, 2011
Cooper River, Camden County, N.J.

Varsity Eights - Petite Final

1. COLUMBIA, 6:38.62
2. Northeastern, 6:42.91
3. Penn, 6:48.54
4. Syracuse, 6:49.69
5. Rutgers, 6:49.89
6. Georgetown, 6:56.02

(Opening Heat One)
1. Princeton, 6:34.85
2. Dartmouth, 6:39.62
3. COLUMBIA, 6:46.25
4. Syracuse, 7:00.87
5. Boston U., 7:05.57

Second Varsity Eights - Petite Final
1. Penn, 6:58.26
2. Northeastern, 7:01.74
3. COLUMBIA, 7:04.51
4. Navy, 7:05.36
5. Syracuse, 7:09.10
6. George Washington, 7:19.19
(4th of 6 in Heat)

Third Varsity Eights - Petite Final
1. Boston U., 6:52.11
2. Radcliffe, 6:53.72
3. Georgetown, 7:03.95
4. Dartmouth, 7:14.55
5. COLUMBIA, 7:26.58
6. Navy, 7:34.35
(4th of 4 in Heat)

Varsity Fours A - Petite Final
1. Navy, 7:36.04
2. Northeastern, 7:38.01
3. Dartmouth, 7:52.25
4. Boston U., 7:55.71
5. Syracuse, 8:00.92
6. COLUMBIA, 8:03.88
(3rd of 5 in Heat)

Varsity Fours B - Grand Final
1. Brown, 7:29.86
2. Cornell, 7:38.29
3. Penn, 7:45.84
4. COLUMBIA, 7:54.01
5. Radcliffe, 7:56.29
6. Boston U., 8:07.00
(3rd of 5 in Heat)

Today's Boatings at the EAWRC Sprints

Varsity Eight
Stephanie Ngai, cox; Nikki Bourassa, stroke; Samantha Warren, 7; Alex Hammerberg, 6; Katie Mitchell, 5; Lily Keane, 4; Meredith Mead, 3; Rebecca Randall, 2; McKenzie Largay, bow

Second Varsity Eight
Shannon Sullivan, cox; Kasey Koopmans, stroke; Fiona Duffy, 7; Bailey Griswold, 6; Mary Nemeth, 5; Alexandra Angelo, 4; Lottie Galliano, 3; Kenzie Bess, 2; Hilary Going, bow

Third Varsity Eight
Sarah Chang, cox; Nikki Tomm, stroke; Katherine Bergstrom, 7; Kate Christensen, 6; Yvonne Vogt, 5; Alexandra Delaney, 4; Sylvie Krekow, 3; Helen Van der Sluis, 2; Natalie Russell, bow

Varsity Four A
Gabrielle Barilla, cox; Louisa Mink, stroke; Natalie Rutherford, 3; Karli McMenamin, 2; Luisa Isbell, bow

Varsity Four B
Jessica Geiger, cox; Jennifer Wukawitz, stroke; Jessica Werlin, 3; Tamar Nisbett, 2; Kellie Solowski, bow