Women’s crew ended its fall season with a strong finish at the Head of the Fish regatta in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., on Oct. 28. The 1V boat placed fifth, gaining ground on the tough competition it faced at the Head of the Charles in the fall, and the 2V won the junior varsity eight-plus race. Last spring, the women won their eighth straight NCAA Div. III Championship and the ninth overall title
for Williams. The 1V and 2V boats also won ECACs and the 1V and novice boats came out on top at the New England Championships. Though the team faced some challenges in the fall, having lost six seniors and with four juniors then studying abroad, it is prepared to live up to its strong legacy in spring sprint racing.
“After a long winter of hard training, we’re definitely looking forward to spring break and the chance to get back on the water and start racing,” co-captain Sarah Peters ’14 said. “We’re excited to have the rest of our juniors back from away and abroad and see what speed they can help us find.”
The team’s hard work over the winter has already begun to pay off. Two Ephs made the trek to Boston on Feb. 16 for their first 2000-meter piece of the season at the C.R.A.S.H. B World Indoor Rowing Championship. At the competition, Katie Westervelt ’16 and Andrea Dunchus ’15 rowed in the U23 lightweight and U23 open weight divisions, respectively. Westervelt won her event with a time of 7:24.7, while Dunchus placed 44th with a time of 7:25.4.
“After spending five months indoors, I think I can speak for everyone when I say that we can’t wait to start racing,” co-captain Tala Abujbara ’14 said. “Our spring break training trip is a fantastic opportunity to translate this gained fitness into boat speed as we work our way back onto the water.”
The team will travel to Myrtle Beach, S.C., for its annual training trip, preparing for the first race of the season on April 5. The women will face Williams Smith, the team that beat them by seven seconds at the Head of the Fish last fall. Under the leadership of the five returning seniors, Abujbara, Peters, Anna Hopkins ’14, Kate Kiernan ’14, Julia May ’14 and Iva Nikolau ’14, the women are ready for a rematch.
“Every year brings its new set of challenges, but we are ready to tackle those head on,” Abujbara said. “I am so excited to see what this year’s iteration of women will accomplish. We have a very eager novice squad that is prepared to hit the ground
running, mirrored by varsity women, who are focused and ready to get after it.”
The 16 first-years on the novice squad are ready to help contribute to the team’s success. The novice boat had a strong showing at its first race last fall, the Head of the Housatonic, which took place on Oct. 12, where it placed fourth. With a range of experience, the first-years are focusing on learning fast and preparing to
get back on the water in Myrtle Beach.
“The competition gets better every year in Div. III rowing, and we’re focusing on controlling what we can and using the speed we’ve gained on the ergs this winter to make our boats go as fast as possible,” Peters said.