Photo: Taylor Armstrong
The Drake crew teams raced separately on Saturday at the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Invitational and at a dual-match against Creighton in preparation for the upcoming conference championship.
Drake’s Varsity 8 won the MAAC Invitational in Shelton, Conn., with a three-second margin over Army.
The boat finished the 2000-meter race in 8 minutes, 36 seconds, to also beat boats from Fairfield University, Iona College, Sacred Heart University and Skidmore College.
“I was very happy that they won today,” head coach Charlie DiSilvestro said. “When we came out to this race we borrowed a boat and had to change the lineups at the last second, which are not normal for our race, but they handled it well.”
Despite close competition during the first 1000 meters, Drake broke through Skidmore near the 1000-meter mark and then passed up Army at the end.
“Army was a fight all the way down. We were lucky our sprint was a little stronger than theirs today, so we sprinted through them right at the end,” DiSilvestro said. “I was really proud of them to see that we were able to race hard in stroke-for-stroke racing and then to have a little left in the tank to sprint through a strong crew like Army.”
The MAAC Invitational comes two weeks before the MAAC Championship where many of the same schools will compete again.
“We set the tone at this race for conference since all the schools, except Army and Skidmore, will be there,” junior Kat Moore said. “This race is what the other schools will look at when assessing competition and helps establish seeding for conference, putting us in a pretty good position.”
Drake’s Junior Varsity and novice boats raced in Omaha, Neb., on the calm 1900-meter Carter Lake course at Creighton.
In the first race of the morning, Drake’s junior varsity 8 finished in 7:06 and behind both Creighton’s junior varsity and varsity boats.
Drake’s novice four maintained contact with one of two Creighton boats until the last 200 meters and clocked in at 7:50. Drake finished three seconds behind one Creighton boat and 28 seconds before the second Creighton boat.
“I think the performance today shows that they could put up with better competition and that training is working,” assistant coach Jaclyn Aldworth said.
In the last heat of the day, another Drake 4 also finished in between two Creighton boats. After the first 1000-meters Creighton’s varsity 4 pulled away to eventually beat Drake by 28 seconds. The Drake boat finished one minute and 23 seconds ahead of the second Creighton 4 with a time of 7:39.
“I think like most teams right now, the goal going into conference is getting our boats up to par with their strength,” Aldworth said. “It’s about getting everything together with technique and strengths and making the boat as fast as possible.”
Drake vs. Creighton regatta results
1st – Creighton A 6:19.8
2nd – Creighton B 6:43.9
3rd – Drake (JV) 7:06.2
1st – Creighton A 7:47.0
2nd – Drake (JV) 7:50.2
3rd – Creighton B 8:18.6