Crews Produce Solid Showing At Head of the Schuylkill

Oct. 25, 2003

PHILADELPHIA - Loyola's rowing team put forth some nice performances at Saturday's Head of the Schuylkill Regatta, which is the largest one-day event in the country for Fall Head Racing and sports some very tough competition, such as the nation's top rowing clubs, pre-elite teams, and nationally-ranked college squads. The following is a description of Loyola's results, boat-by-boat, as told by Greyhound Director of Rowing and Head Coach Al Ramirez.

Men's Novice-4 12th place:

This was a challenging race for novices. We do not practice the novices often in these boats because the 4's are much smaller and more unstable than the 8's so they require more technical finesse to make them go fast. However, this was a good effort by a very young and inexperienced group of novices who were racing with the primary goal of gaining head racing experience.

Men's Novice-8 24th-place of 37:

This race was loaded with talent. Our novices raced their five-true-novice line-up against the big hitters of East Coast collegiate level rowing. The leaders in this race were Princeton, Penn, St. Joe's, Navy, and Army--in that order. At this time of year, results tend to be skewed towards teams that have a large number of experienced high school talent. The learning curve is steep for collegiate novices though, and the athletes will be able to compete on a much more level playing field come late-April. The squad continues to improve weekly.

Women's Novice-8 31st-place of 42:

This is one of the largest fields we see before the spring championships and is led by Princeton, Syracuse, Fordham, Navy, Lehigh, Georgetown, and George Washington and is clearly a race for the large and established teams. Our Novice-8 did a great job against good competition, beating teams from George Mason, U Conn-B, Navy-C, Manhattan, U of Maryland, Carnegie Mellon, and William & Mary.

Womens's Club/Open-8 9th-place of 30:

This boat recorded the Greyhound program's brightest finish of the day with their ninth-place showing. The result is even more significant when considering the strength of the field. Although we lost to the top crews from Villanova, Rhode Island, Navy, Lehigh and Washington College, we did finish ahead of very good crews from Temple, Holy Cross, Georgetown, Army, George Mason, Lehigh B and Delaware B with very limited personnel. We had at least three true lightweights in the boat, a very raw group of sophomores and some fairly interesting mid-race equipment problems that cost us a bit of time, yet we managed to finish just seconds behind Villanova B and Columbia. The team felt pretty good about the race and the results, so we are happy that the team was able to push on in spite of their equipment difficulties.

Men's Champ 8 19th-place:

As has been the case all fall, we raced the Championship category with the men and they put out a good, hard effort against the most impressive field of the day. The Elite clubs of New York AC and Penn AC dominated the event while perennial powerhouse teams from Navy, Temple, and Penn chased them down the course at incredibly high stroke-rates for a head race situation. Conference rival Marist and a deep George Washington crew beat us as well and we ended up 19th overall. On the bright side, Loyola captain Will Farrell was very pleased with the way the race felt, saying that this varsity 8, with three freshmen in it, is the fastest 8 he's been a member of since he arrived at Loyola in 2001-02. I can't complain about that. Give us a couple more years to get these guys some championship level strength and we will be set. Although it is very unorthodox to put such competition on the narrow shoulders of four sophomores and three freshmen, I feel it is more fun for the sophomores to race a varsity-8 than just a 4, and I feel it will only help the freshman to be aggressive through winter and spring training.