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Bates eights all top 3 in Grand Finals of New England Championships

Bates' women's varsity eight claimed the silver medal in the WV8 Grand Final of the New England Rowing Championships for the third straight year. (File photo by Peter Steenstra)

WORCESTER, Mass. -- The Bates men's and women's rowing teams combined to put all five of its varsity eights (two men's, three women's) into top-three finishes in their respective Grand Finals in a spectacular day for the Bobcats at the New England Rowing Championships.

The Bates women's varsity eight (WV8) beat five other boats, including runner-up Wellesley (6:35.383 to 6:39.419) in its preliminary heat, then outpaced Wellesley again for second place in the Grand Final, 6:41.614 to 6:42.788, trailing only No. 1-ranked Williams (6:34.024). Rounding out the field were Trinity, Holy Cross and New Hampshire. It is the third year in a row Bates has claimed the silver in the race, and the fifth straight year of finishing in the top four.

Bates' W2V8 won its preliminary heat, beating Smith 6:47:845 to 6:52.950, and three others. Williams finished less than four seconds ahead of Bates in the Grand Final, 6:40.935 to 6:44.851, while the Bobcats outrowed Holy Cross (6:50.657), Trinity, Smith and Wellesley. The W2V8 was the one Bates boat to establish a program record with its silver medal, according to assistant coach Tom Guncik in his blog, The Bates Rower .

Bates also had its W3V8 make its Grand Final and finish third.

The Bates men also had an outstanding day at NERCs. The Bobcat MV8 was a close second in its preliminary heat, 5:55.534 to 5:57.153, with Colby putting up a very good fight at 5:58.581 but missing its bid to make the Grand Final. Bates' MV8 took third place out of six boats in the Grand Final, trailing Williams and Trinity but defeating New Hampshire, WPI and Rhode Island.

"This young men's varsity crew showed poise and maturity to finish third in dramatic fashion," blogged Guncik. "They were about half a boat back of the pack battling for third going into the second 500 [meters]. In the third 500 they began to work their way back into the mix. Coxswain Jake Sandor '14 called for the crew to bring the rate up in an attempt to drive them onwards and the crew responded with some furious strokes in the final 500. They were neck and neck with UNH in the final strokes and the decision on who finished third was determined by photo finish. Fortunately the bow of the [recently christened] Semper Fidelis, a much longer hull than the older Hudsons, crossed the finish line first and Bates returned to the medals dock for the second time in three years."

The Bates M2V8 fared similarly, edging Colby in prelims (6:11.083 to 6:13.116) for second place behind Trinity (6:07.031), then claiming the bronze in the Grand Final, close behind runner-up Trinity, 6:08.811 to 6:09.792 and just ahead of WPI (6:10.255), with Wesleyan and Colby rounding out the field.

Women's varsity eight lineup: coxswain: Nora Collins '11, stroke: Allison Di Salvo '12, 7: Elizabeth Sonshine '12, 6: Emma White '11, 5: Phoebe Reed '11, 4: Rebecca Waldo '11, 3: Kelsey Dion '12, 2: Haley Sive '12, bow: Ellen Patterson '11

Women's second varsity eight lineup: Coxswain: Gabby Bilotta '14, stroke: Sarah Murphy '14, 7: Hannah Richardson '11, 6: Hopie King '14, 5: Alexandra Hill '14, 4: Heather Monty '14, 3: Catherine Tuttle '13, 2: Amy Jacks '12, bow: Aisling Ryan '14

Men's varsity eight lineup: coxswain: Jake Sandor '14, stroke: Gar Ditz '14, 7: Peter Haley '13, 6: Hank Schless '14, 5: Andre Gobbo '13, 4: Jake Harwood '14, 3: Matt Johns '13, 2: Jordy Winslow '13, bow: Ollie Scholle '12

Men's second varsity eight lineup: coxswain: Gabe Silverman '11, stroke: Peter K. Miller '12, 7: Charlie Carey '13, 6: Sam MacGregor '14, 5: Harry Chung '11, 4: Joseph Nowak '11, 3: Jason Weeks '11, 2: Caleb Glassman '14, bow: Jon Frye '14

Bates competes at the ECAC/National Invitational Rowing Championships next Sunday, May 8, in Worcester.

REGATTA RESULTS

Go to The Bates Rower blog.