CREW: Yale takes three titles over weekend

The Yale women’s, men’s heavyweight and men’s lightweight crew teams saw intense competition from Dartmouth, Boston University, Penn, Columbia and Cornell this weekend.

The teams hosted the five schools at home at the Gilder Boathouse. The Eli women swept Dartmouth and Boston University and claimed the Class of 1985 Cup. The heavyweight team also swept the Big Green to hold on to the Olympic Axe. The lightweight men raced both Saturday and Sunday, beating out Columbia and Penn for the Dodge Cup on Saturday and falling to Cornell on Sunday.

“It was an exciting race, and it’s going to be an exciting season,” said women’s head coach Will Porter. “And we were really lucky with these conditions.”

The Yale crews rowed in ideal conditions on the Housatonic after practicing through strong winds during the week.

Women’s captain Maddie Lips ’14 said all of the women’s boats performed well. According to Lips, the Bulldogs will continue to work with their coaches to find speed in all of their boats.

“It was a great weekend for the entire Yale crew program,” she said. “Having all three Yale teams racing on our course made for a great sense of spirit and camaraderie.”

All five of the women’s crews have been undefeated thus far. The first and second varsities finished the 2000-meter course in 6:07.6 minutes and 6:17.6 minutes, respectively, and both won by four seconds. The two fours and the third varsity eight saw even wider margins of victory.

The heavyweight team also maintained their undefeated record after the weekend’s races. The first varsity finished in 5:27.6 minutes, beating Dartmouth by 12 seconds. The third varsity boat also won by 12 seconds, finishing the course in 5:47.7 minutes.

The closest race for the heavyweight men was the first — between the Dartmouth and Yale second varsity eights. The Bulldogs were able to win with a much slimmer margin of three seconds. The second boat pulled a 5:41.6.

The Eli lightweights won in two of four races. The first and second varsity squads triumphed in tight races against Columbia in 5:34.99 and 5:43.2 minutes, respectively, with wins of two and one second margins. Penn lagged slightly behind in both races.

The first freshman boat was disqualified from its race due to a collision at the turn, and the third varsity was beat by Columbia, but finished with a strong time of 6:06.9 minutes.

“Lightweight rowing is intense and incredibly competitive, as the results show,” said lightweight captain Matt O’Donoghue ’14. “[The second varsity] did an especially remarkable job this weekend, fighting hard in two incredibly close races.”

Though the Cornell boats swept the Yale lightweight boats, Yale’s second varsity gave the Big Red tough competition. The race was nearly too close to call with Yale finishing in 6:11.9 minutes and losing to Cornell by just 0.11 seconds. The Bulldogs’ first varsity finished the course in 5:59.46 minutes.

The lightweight men will host Dartmouth and MIT this weekend, while the heavyweight team will host Columbia and Penn. Women’s crew will travel to face Princeton for its first away race of the season.

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