Rowers, Alumni, and Friends,
This past weekend Charleston Crew competed in the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championship regatta. This year featured 58 Colleges and Universities reaching from Florida to the Northeast to the Mid-West.
Charleston featured 5 entries: Women’s Varsity 4+, Women’s Novice 4+, Women’s Varsity 2X, Men’s Varsity 1X, and Men’s Varsity 4+.
A last minute injury plagued our all-senior WV4+ and prevented their full line-up from practicing on Friday. A tough heat found the WV4+ beating Miami and Clemson, but falling short to U of Florida, U of Delaware, and Purdue and not advancing to the semi-finals.
Our Men’s Varsity 4+ highlighted the Saturday racing easily winning their heat by 20 seconds of open water. A semi-final race in the afternoon would see Charleston .5 sec slower than Temple, finishing second, and securing a spot in Sunday’s Grand Final.
Sunday – Finals Day
Rain and Fog caused some controversial cancellations of events for some of Charleston’s rowers. The Varsity Women’s 2X was not allowed to row in the medal race and the NW4+ (after beating Purdue and Miami) were not allowed to compete in their B Final.
Luckily, Charleston’s Varsity Men’s 4+ was allowed to compete for the Championship Cup against Temple, Virginia, Notre Dame, Rollins, and Florida. After posting the third fastest time and falling to Temple during the semi-finals, CofC had an uphill battle.
Charleston shot out to an early lead by the 250 meter mark. By 500 meters, Temple surged forward with Rollins, Virginia, and Notre Dame all within 5 feet of each other. By the thousand meter mark the same 5 boats were still competing for the top spot putting some separation from Florida. At 1500 meters with 500 to go Charleston pulled out all that it had. A seasons worth of grueling practices would pay off. CofC would win by a half a length with a photo finish deciding 2nd through 4th (Temple, Notre Dame, Rollins). A finish time of 6:34.6, makes these athletes the fastest in Charleston Crew’s history, and adds a third SIRA Championship Cup to our collection.
A special thanks to all of the support from our coaches, parents and alumni at SIRA, and especially CRS Director, Gene Sessoms for all of his help in getting us where we need to go.
These four men will compete for the Dad Vail and the ACRA National Championship in the weeks to come. I’ll keep you posted.
College of Charleston Crew
“A coach is someone who always makes you do what you don’t want to do so you can be who you’ve always wanted to be.”