On Saturday, men’s crew raced against Wesleyan on Lake Onota for the Little Three Championship. The Ephs saw impressive performances from every boat en route to sweeping the Cardinals. Amherst is traditionally invited to the Little Three event but has not fielded a team recently. The Ephs hold the varsity record for the Saratoga Oar, the main trophy for the event, with 25 wins to the Cardinals’ 15 and the Jeffs’ four.
The Ephs’ 1V boat featured a completely new line-up in the weekend’s regatta. Head Coach Peter Wells ’79 spent a large part of the week seat-racing the varsity boats in an attempt to find the fastest combination for the upcoming championship season. “I don’t quite think we have found the right eight men for the 1V yet,” Wells said.
Nonetheless, the first varsity boat raced well against the Wesleyan 1V and crossed the line with open water in a time of 6:02.4, about seven seconds ahead of Wesleyan. “Wesleyan really frontloaded the race so we were level to the 500 meter, but when they settled to base pace we stared to open the margin,” co-captain Alex Treco ’12 said. The 1V boat was also successful in setting a new the course record, beating the previous record by about a second.
The 2V boat completed the men’s sweep of Wesleyan with a 6.8-second win. “We took seven seats off of our start sequence and all of our moves were clean and decisive,” coxswain Andrew Marsh ’14 said. The Ephs broke contact at the 1000 meter and went on to win by over a boatlength.
Both Williams novice boats competed well against the Wesleyan 3V. The first novice boat quickly separated from Wesleyan, gaining open water in the first 500 meters and continuing to increase the distance throughout the race. The novices powered through the finish line to clock a time of 6:16.0, about 20 seconds ahead of the Wesleyan crew. The second novice boat fought hard to stay with Wesleyan through the 1000 meter but was unable to hold on; Wesleyan beat the second novice boat out for second.
After the awards ceremony, the Ephs headed back to the water for an intra-squad 2k race to prepare for the championship races, in which double racing is the norm. The 2V boat stole the show again with another great race.
On Saturday, the men will host Ithaca, Coast Guard, West Point and Bucknell at their home course on Onota Lake. In the morning, the boats will face Ithaca, Coast Guard and West Point before returning to the water in the afternoon against Bucknell.