IND narrowly beats Roland Park in main event

Indians win varsity eights, but Reds take team title

Crew

High School

May 06, 2002|By Katherine Dunn | Katherine Dunn,SUN STAFF

A second and a half made all the difference in the marquee race at yesterday's Baltimore Championship regatta at the Baltimore Rowing Club off Waterview Park in Cherry Hill.

Powered by a big jump at the start, the Institute of Notre Dame held off Roland Park's late surge to nip the Reds by 1.52 seconds in the women's varsity eights.

"When it comes down to a second and a half, it's who took the last stroke the hardest," said Roland Park coach David Rosen. "Over 1,500 meters, that second and a half is gained or lost in every stroke. You're talking a fraction of a fraction of a second per stroke."

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For IND - coxswain Courtney Haile, Shellie Bronis, Natalie Schuck, Stephanie Krause, Christine Melvin, Isabel Portieles, Mary Kate Flanagan, Tera Gebhardt and Libby Long - that second and a half means bragging rights for the next year. Roland Park edged IND, 20-18, in team points, but IND won the race everybody wanted most to win in 6:31.02.

At the start, the Indians broke quickly and St. Paul's fell off early. Bryn Mawr challenged first, but going under the Hanover Street Bridge, with about a third of the race left, the Reds began edging up. At that point, the Indians had about half-a-boat lead on Bryn Mawr.

"I just tried to hold them off at the end, because that's when everybody really wants it," said Bronis, the stroke seat, or pacesetter, for the IND boat. "You just want to win. You have that drive that you need to beat them and you push so hard."

The Reds - coxswain Charlotte Hindsley, Lauren Shepley, Airlia Esworthy, Emily Dierkes, Kristina Ponpa, Libby Cole, Olivia Stringer, Callie Helms and Morgan Katz - passed the Mawrtians, but they didn't have enough left to catch the Indians.

"I never pushed myself that hard before," said Shepley, the Reds' stroke seat. "A lot of times I come off and I think, `I could have pulled a little bit harder for that last sprint,' but that definitely didn't happen this time. I don't think I could have pulled any harder."

The regatta, staged by the coaches since 1995 because there aren't enough teams to form an official league, was fairly even, with IND, Roland Park and St. Paul's winning two events each. Only four points separated first place from third, where the Gators placed with 16 points.

IND's lightweight boat won the JV eights, while St. Paul's won the novice eights and the novice fours. The Reds took the varsity fours and the JV fours.

In the boys race, the only competition between two local teams this season, St. Paul's cruised past Gilman's club team in the men's novice eights by more than 27 seconds.

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