Nov. 6, 2005
FAIRFAX, Va. - The Greyhound crew teams continued to show improvement as they competed at the Head of the Occoquan Regatta against many teams from the Mid-Atlantic region, including local rivals Johns Hopkins, George Mason and American.
"I thought it was a pretty good event for us," Coach Al Ramirez said. "This was a great chance to see where we stand and to continue getting better."
Competing in its second race ever, the men's novice 8 finished second out of 12 races and beat squads from William & Mary, St. John's, Duquesne, Washington College, Johns Hopkins, Penn State, Duke and George Mason.
Meanwhile, the women's novice 8 finished in 12th place out of 17 teams in the 3.2-mile course. The event was won by William & Mary, followed by Virginia Commonwealth and Delaware. "There is a lot of skill and athleticism in that boat," Ramirez said. "I think they may have been intimidated by the length of the course."
The men's championship 4 crew earned a third-place finish and just missed second place by finishing 10 seconds behind Washington College. The Greyhounds were able to finish ahead of Carnegie Mellon, Johns Hopkins, Duquesne and Duke. "This crew has a lot more learning to do, but pretty soon, their skill will catch up to their athleticism," Ramirez continued. Senior Robert Von Hagen led the new lineup in the event.
The women's championship 4 squad finished 14th out of 26 crews in the event. "We don't practice that lineup together often, which could have contributed to the outcome," Ramirez said.
In the men's freshman 4, the Greyhounds finished in fifth place out of nine crews, beating Richmond, Duke, American and Prince William. However, Loyola finished just seven seconds behind Johns Hopkins.
The women's college 4 finished in seventh place while the women's championship 8 earned a fifth-place showing with a time of 19:57. The Greyhounds beat Penn State and rowing clubs from Alexandria. Behind the strong effort from captain Lauren Opalenski , the Greyhounds finished just seven seconds behind host George Mason. "It was not a bad row and the girls were happy with the result," Ramirez commented.
In the men's championship 8 event, the Greyhounds were surprised by Johns Hopkins, which finished 10 seconds ahead of Loyola. The Greyhounds finished ahead of George Mason, Bucknell, and William & Mary. "Our guys may have been tired because they rowed earlier in the day," Ramirez said of the outcome. "We expected to win that race, but the fatigue and a penalty hurt our chances."
The men's lightweight 8 crew won the event in convincing fashion, beating Penn State by 59 seconds, avenging the loss the team suffered last week. "The races are generally tight because of the weight limit involved," Ramirez said. "It was a solid effort from this group."
The Greyhounds also competed in the mixed 8 event, which featured four Loyola coaches, a pair of coaches from Johns Hopkins, a Loyola alum and a current rower. The team finished first, beating club programs from North Alleghany and Baltimore.
Loyola returns to action next weekend with a pair of events in Philadelphia. On Saturday, the Greyhounds compete in the Philadelphia Frostbite Regatta before competing in the Bill Braxton Memorial Regatta on Sunday. "We go from the distance races to the sprint races next weekend, which will help us improve our sprinting technique," Ramirez said.