ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Competing for the second time this 2021 season, the Navy women’s rowing team put together a strong effort on Saturday with a three-race sweep of George Washington. Racing on their home Severn River for the first time since April 6, 2019, the Mids (2-0) defeated the Colonials (1-3) in the first and second varsity eight events by six-plus seconds before going one-two-three in the varsity four competition.
“Today we were very fortunate to be able to run a home race against George Washington,” remarked head coach Joe Schlosberg. “One of the biggest things we lost over the past year was the opportunity to gain race experience so each time we line up, we learn more about ourselves and how to race.”
The action began with the top varsity eight crews going head-to-head. Competitive during the early portion of the race, Navy started pulling away in the middle 1,000 meters. The Mids were comfortably ahead when the teams hit the seawall and they found that next gear down the stretch to earn a 6.05-second victory over the Colonials, 6:52.54 to 6:58.59.
“We were able to push our bow ahead of GW and build out to a four-seat lead early on,” said Schlosberg when recapping the V8 race. “By the 1,000-meter mark, we pushed out to an open water lead, but were just not as aggressive as I would have liked. However during the final stretch along the seawall, we were able to find the aggression and speed that we have and were able to close strong.”
In the second varsity eight contest, Navy had a pair of boats entered alongside George Washington’s 2V. The visitors broke out to an early lead over Navy’s second and third varsity crews before the Mids’ 2V began its comeback. Once Navy’s second varsity boat got moving it couldn’t be stopped as the Mids turned in a dominant home stretch and won by 8.21 seconds, 7:03.63 to 7:11.84. Navy’s 3V challenged George Washington and came in less than four seconds off the Colonials’ mark with a time of 7:15.74.
“GW jumped out on us at the start of the 2V,” remarked Schlosberg. “The boat remained calm and steadily worked their way, inch-by-inch back into and then through the GW boat. The Navy 3V, also in the race, locked themselves just off the GW stern and would not let go. When the 2V hit the seawall, this boat found another gear and broke open water on GW and kept opening. The 3V never relented and put together a great race as well.”
A quartet of varsity four boats concluded the day of racing on the Severn on Saturday morning. In a showing of Navy’s depth and quality throughout its ranks, the Mids had three crews all clock in ahead of the Colonials’ top four-person crew. Navy’s team in the “Venom” shell found itself battling with “Viper” for most of the 2,000 meters as Venom won by less than two seconds, 7:41.42 to 7:43.28. The Mids’ “Liberty” crew came in ahead of George Washington’s entry with a time of 7:59.55 versus a 8:12.36 for the visitors.
“We raced hard today,” said Schlosberg in closing. “We had some great moments and we also made some mistakes, but we gained more experience. We will take this and build from it!”
Navy will be back in action next Saturday, April 24 when the Mids travel to Charlottesville, Virginia for a head-to-head matchup with the Cavaliers on the Rivanna Reservoir.
First Varsity Eight
Navy – 6:52.54
George Washington – 6:58.59
Second Varsity Eight
Navy – 7:03.63
George Washington – 7:11.84
Navy 3V – 7:15.74
Navy “Venom” – 7:41.42
Navy “Viper” – 7:43.28
Navy “Liberty” – 7:59.55
George Washington – 8:12.36