Crew team ready to dominate

After spending the winter training indoors, men’s and women’s crew are now preparing to return to the water for the spring sprint-racing season. The crew team had a very successful spring last year with both men and women coming in second place at the New England Championship. Women’s crew then went on to win the NCAA Div. III championship while the men went to compete in England at the Henley Royal Regatta.

For the men’s team, six of the nine members from the varsity boat will return this year. “While it was hard to lose the seniors from last year, I’ve been really impressed with the kind of leadership that the underclassmen have taken,” Steven Scroggins ’04 said. “The younger rowers have been really stepping up and recognizing how important they are to our success.”

Led by team captains Mark Rothlisberger ’03 and Luke Hyde ’03, the men’s team seeks to capture the New England championship. Starting this year, the top NESCAC crew will secure a bid to the Intercollegiate Rowing Championship and compete against top crews from around the country like the University of Wisconsin and Princeton. “Williams crew has shown long term dominance in this league and we are looking forward to the opportunity to be recognized by receiving the first IRA bid given a NESCAC team,” Emily Peinert ’05 said.

The women’s team will have only four of nine rowers returning from their varsity program. Led by co-captains Emma Herries ’03 and Liz Mygatt ’03, the women hope to continue their success within the NESCAC and to defend their national title. “We’ve got a relatively young squad this year, but we worked incredibly hard during the winter and the underclassmen are really rising to the occasion. I think everyone is just psyched to be getting back on the water,” Anne Lewis ’04 said.

While their home lake in Pittsfield thaws, the crew will spend their spring break training in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and return early for their first race of the season on April 5 against the University of New Hampshire and last year’s New England Champions, Holy Cross. Other major highlights of the season include the Little Three Regatta at home against Wesleyan and Amherst for the coveted Saratoga Oar, which Williams now possesses, and the New England Championship on May 2. Speculating on the upcoming season, coxswain Jay Halleck ’05 said, “The key to a successful season is making the decision to go fast, rather than looking for excuses why you can’t, and in order to make it to IRAs, we’re going to have to take advantage of every minute on the water.”