Crew Earns Win At Bill Braxton Memorial Regatta

Nov. 14, 2010

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - The Loyola University Maryland rowing team returned to Philadelphia's Schyulkill River Rowing Course on Sunday for the Bill Braxton Memorial Regatta, capturing one win and collecting several strong finishes on the day.

“With the one win and some close races, it was a really good day overall,” said Head Coach Al Ramirez. “We can’t ask for much more than what we got.”

The Greyhounds won their first race of the fall in the Women's Freshmen/Novice Four race. The craft held off second-place Rochester by 2.67 seconds while also beating out entries from Lehigh and Rochester.

Loyola trailed until the final 300 feet of the race after spending most of the race nearly a full boat-length behind. In the final 10 strokes, the boat overtook Rochester with a sprint-level pace to earn the win.

"It was a great race, and it was with a lineup we hadn't actually planned for. At the team’s suggestion, we moved Sarah La Barth to the stroke seat and it worked out,” said Ramirez. “That bodes well for us.”

Kimberly Winiarczyk offered an impressive display of versatility on Sunday, accomplishing the rare feat of sitting in the stroke seat for the Women's College Varsity Eight before serving as the coxswain for both the Women's Four and the Varsity Men's Four.

Loyola began the regatta with a Women's College Varsity Eight race and a third-place finish. The Greyhounds' boat trailed second-place Binghamton by three seconds and finished ahead of Penn State and Scranton.

The Men's College Varsity Eight crew finished fifth in Loyola's second race of the day.

The Greyhounds nearly nabbed a victory in the Women's Freshmen/Novice Eight. The craft finished just 2.77 seconds behind Binghamton while enjoying a healthy 21-second advantage over third-place Scranton.

“The women said they felt a lot more powerful even though they weren’t as smooth,” said Ramirez. "In rowing, that power is a lot more important right now."

A fifth-place finish in the Men's Freshmen/Novice Eight came next. The crew attempted to catch Colgate and Lehigh on the shortened course but couldn't make up enough time.

The Loyola women continued their strong day with the Women's Four in the second-to last race of the day. The craft finished behind Drexel but outpaced boats from Rochester, Penn State and Temple to finish third.

The final race of the day saw the Greyhounds compete in the Men's Four. Jordan Mastera helped in the stroke seat in one of the most exciting races of the day. The craft built a 29-second lead over Hiawatha Island but lost second place by just three-tenths of a second to Fairmount. The two boats trailed the winning boat from Georgetown by five seconds.

The Invitational marked the final fall event of the season for the rowing team. The Greyhounds will return to the water for the spring season in March, but Ramirez said he's happy with how the fall season ended.

“The showings that we had today and seeing how we were actually rowing and racing against teams like Temple gave us a good affirmation that our technical training has improved us," Ramirez said. "I'm glad to see the novice women eight had such a strong row, because we never train them all together. So to be able to row as well as they did was a testament to their skill, and overall I think our novices feel pretty positive and fired up about the fall."