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Ephs win third NCAA Div. III Rowing title; 2nd in a row
May 26, 2007

2007 NCAA Champions: Front (left to right): Monsie Munoz, Kat Conaway, Nancy Gephart, Allison Prevatt, Angela Crudele, Elissa Brown & Heather Barney. Mid, row: Katherine Robinson, Meg Conan, Louisa Berky, Whitney Hitchcock, Madeline Berky & Julia Halterman. Back row: Kate Sortun, Katie Quayle, Carolyn Skudder, Abby Weir, Emily Cheston & Pat Tynan.

OAK RIDGE, TN – Confidence has to be earned, but once you earn it you can do some marvelous things -- ask the women’s crew team from Williams.

The Williams Varsity 2 boat set the stage this morning for their undefeated Varsity 1 boat to cap off the Ephs’ NCAA title run by being the first Varsity 2 boat across the line in the Petite Final, immediately preceding the Grand Final.

The third place finish in the Petite Final pushed Trinity 2 to 4th and Ithaca 2 into fifth. That meant that Trinity had to pin the first defeat of the year on Williams in the Varsity 1 race to win the NCAA title.

When the Eph Varsity 1 closed out an undefeated season by winning the Grand Final by a full length over Trinity the Eph team total was 18 points and gave Williams its third overall NCAA Rowing title (2002 & 2006) and gave them back-to-back titles.

Williams is the first Div. III school to win three rowing titles.

Most impressive when you consider that Eph head coach Pat Tynan was the interim head coach for this academic year only and had not been on campus until last summer. Tynan greeted an Eph crew that had lost 10 rowers (out of 20) from last year’s championship team and had one senior in his top 20 rowers in captain Carolyn Scudder. Confidence in each other and confidence in the new coach would be key ingredients in building a successful season.

The Eph 2 boat started the year strong and then had some midseason struggles, which they had been working through since just before the New England Championships. This morning they went out and got the job done – just like they did yesterday in qualifying for the Petite Final – call it confidence restored. The Eph 2 boat had defeated Trinity earlier in the year, but had not raced well against them since. A dose of confidence and a mission to complete were added into today’s successful effort.

Halfway through the Petite Final the Eph 2 boat was three seats behind Trinity, but the Ephs maintained their poise and confidence and steadily began reeling in Trinity and finished in 7:09.95 -- 2.65 seconds ahead of the Bantams in claiming third. “They knew they had to beat Trinity today and they had the best last 500 meters they’ve ever had to finish ahead of Trinity,” noted asst. coach Heather Barney. “They peaked at the right time and they did not give in,” added head coach Pat Tynan. “The boat was really happy to finish the year as the top Varsity 2 boat in the country after the season they’ve had,” said Barney.

The University of Mary Washington 1 boat took first in the Petite Final in a time of 7:03.37 with the Coast Guard 1 boat second in 7:03.67. Ithaca 2 was fifth in 7:12.60 and Bates 2 was sixth in 7:15.26.

It was all Williams in the Grand Final as the Ephs were out front from practically the first stroke and by 500 meters had almost a length on Trinity and held that lead until Trinity made a charge at 1,000 meters. The Ephs responded to the Trinity charge by opening up a lead of open water at 1,500 meters and cruising home with a one length victory. “It was business as usual for the Varsity 1 boat as they just went out did what they do and their experience allowed the not to get caught up in the greatness of the event.” Williams won with a time of 6:49.15. Trinity was second in (6:53.14), Bates was third in 6:57.10, Puget Sound was fourth in 6:57.17, William Smith was fifth in 6:59.92 and Ithaca was sixth in 7:00.48.

“This is a pretty special group of kids,” said Tynan. “They were able to keep this end in sight and still focus on the day-to-day things they needed to do to get here and win.”

NESCAC finished 1, 2, and 3 at the NCAA Championships with Williams on top, Trinity second and Bates third. Anne Lewis '04 served as an interim co-head coach for Bates this season.

Final Standings
1. Williams 18
2. Trinity 16
3. Bates 13
4. Puget Sound* 11
5. Ithaca* 11
6. William Smith 9

*Final Standings ties broken by finish in grand final

Eph lineups:

Coxswain: Allison Prevatt
8. Emily Cheston
7. Abigail Weir
6. Julia Halterman
5. Carolyn Skudder
4. Louisa Berky
3. Kate Sortun
2. Katie Quayle
1. Katherine Robinson

2V8 Coxswain: Monsie Munoz 8. Angela Crudele 7. Katherine Conaway 6. Elissa Brown 5. Meg Conan 4. Madeline Berky 3. Rebecca Nourse 2. Nisi Zang 1. Nancy Gephart

Spares: Whitney Hitchcock Kyra Ferber

Click here to see row2k.com article

Click here to see row2k.com's Friday photos

Click here to see row2k.com's Saturday photos