Racing a team composed mainly of underclassmen, the No. 1 Yale coed and No. 1 women’s sailing teams put together a good team effort this weekend to finish seventh and sixth, respectively, at the fall Atlantic Coast Championships.
In its final regatta of the season, the coed team sailed a total of four teams throughout the weekend. The Bulldogs competed without the duo of skipper Ian Barrows ’17 and crew Meredith Megarry ’17 — who were unable to race because of an injury to Barrows — giving head coach Zachary Leonard ’89 the chance to send out five underclassmen out of the eight total sailors. The two teams sailing the A division combined to finish in seventh and the B division teams finished in sixth place as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology captured the championship.
“The team worked hard this weekend, despite challenging Charles River conditions in which it was difficult to be consistent,” crew Clara Robertson ’17 said. “I thought the team did a good job of thinking productively and sharing information after each race, which will definitely pay off in future events.”
The coed ACCs are held in the Charles River, which sailors noted is a notoriously challenging location. The river is known to have shifting currents, forcing sailors to figure out the patterns and adjust to the added challenges.
Saturday’s sailing conditions featured a northwest breeze that fluctuated from five to 12 knots, clocking left throughout the day. The Elis sent out skipper Nic Baird ’19 and crew Graceann Nicolosi ’20 to sail in the A division. Skipper and captain Mitchell Kiss ’17 and Robertson raced for the B division. Following the day’s 10 races, both teams led their respective divisions in first place.
On Sunday, Yale trotted out four different sailors to sail in warmer temperatures and a five to 11 knot westerly wind. Skipper Nick Hernandez ’19 and Caroline Colwell ’18 teamed up for the A division and Malcolm Lamphere ’18 and Chandler Gregoire ’17 sailed in the B division. Though both teams began with the lead, neither was able to hold onto their top spot.
“The bigger achievement out of this regatta was not necessarily winning but rather that everyone was able to sail in a highly competitive regatta together,” Nicolosi said. “Dynamically, I thought this regatta brought us closer together as a team as we were able to watch our teammates perform.”
The women’s team raced at the College of Charleston, placing sixth in an 18-school field after facing 15 to 18 knots winds and 2.5 knot ebb tides on Sunday. Skipper Casey Klingler ’18 sailed in the A Division alongside crews Natalya Doris ’17 and Chrissie Klingler ’20. In the B division, skippers KB Knapp ’18 and Louisa Nordstrom ’20 sailed with crews Doris, Kira Woods ’19 and Isabelle Rossi de Leon ’17.
The A division team finished in fifth place with 127 points, 12 behind fourth place Boston University. Meanwhile, the Elis finished ninth in the B division. Combining their scores, Yale placed sixth with 290 points, one ahead of seventh-place Georgetown.
The ACCs will mark the last outing of Yale’s fall season as it wraps up a successful beginning to the year. The Bulldogs will take a few weeks off for the remainder of the semester and will resume practice in March. During spring break, the team will move to south to a warmer location to train for upcoming regattas.
“I was really happy with our progress,” Leonard said. “I think we are ending the fall with a good idea of what are good at and where can make some incremental improvements. We are looking forward to the spring and trying to learn as much as we can about team racing.”
The coed team finished third at the Gill Coed National Championships, and the women’s team finished fifth at the Sperry Top-Sider Women’s National Championships last season.