UR Women’s Rowing (URR) began its spring competition on Saturday afternoon at the Cayuga Inlet. The team is coming off of a fall season where it missed first place in the Liberty League by a point. Because it’s the spring, all team members have some experience, but the team is still relatively young, as 21 of the 29 rowers are underclassmen.
Key to the team’s success will be senior captain Alice Bandeian and coxswain Crystal Hoffman, also a senior. The pair earned All-Liberty League honors in the fall and will steady the 1st Varsity 8 Boat with their leadership.
URR spent spring break in Tennessee, where they practiced and scrimmaged against Skidmore and Hamilton. The week allowed them to determine lineups and primed them for the upcoming season.
On Saturday, in Ithaca, the ‘Jackets, who entered ranked 15th in the preseason poll, faced the host no. 5 Ithaca College and no. 8 RIT, in the 2,000-meter sprint race. In the first varsity eight, the team finished in third place with a time of 8:30.28, while RIT finished in 7:48.40 and Ithaca won with a time 7:37.64, according to UR Athletics
URR closed the gap a bit in the second varsity eight boat, actually posting a marginally better time at 8:29.77. The order was the same, however, as Ithaca won in 8:02.18 and RIT followed at 8:16.88. The novice four team also came in third, in a race that only went to 1500 meters because of weather conditions.
On Sunday, in Geneva, the ‘Jackets faced off against host William Smith College, further down the same Seneca-Cayuga Canal as the day before, on a day with a considerable head current.
In the first varsity eight boat, the host Herons beat out the ‘Jackets by 20 seconds, finishing in 7:57.34 to URR’s 8:17.32. The margin was similar in the second varsity boat, as the Herons won 8:18.98 to 8:43.45. UR’s novice fours finished behind two William Smith boats.
Though the results haven’t been ideal thus far, the team has faced steep competition up to this point, and the weekend will act as a learning experience for its many younger rowers.
URR’s next opportunity will be next weekend at the Barbara Donahue Cup in Worcester, Mass, where Worcester Polytechnic Institute will be hosts.
Clarification (4/10/17): An attribution to UR Athletics was added.