Hadley, Mass. – Spurred by victories in three of four races, Wellesley College crew claimed the 2016 Seven Sisters Rowing Championship, despite a mechanical issue during the Varsity 8 race, on Sunday morning on the Connecticut River. The title is the eighth in-a-row for the Blue.
Wellesley took first in the Novice and Second Novice races as well as the 2nd Varsity race but a mechanical issue derailed Wellesley's Varsity 8, sending the Blue to the back of the pack. The Blue's Varsity 8 hit submerged debris on the course that dislodged the boat's rudder, leaving the team unable to steer. Despite a valiant effort from crew and coxswain, the malfunction left the Blue with little chance to compete in the race. Wellesley's team made it safely to shore following the on-course issue.
Smith would go on to take the title in the Varsity 8 race with a time of 17:38, the host Pioneers were followed by Mount Holyoke (18:19), Bryn Mawr (18:34), and Simmons (18:37). However, Wellesley's performances in the opening three races of the day helped the Blue capture the team title with 30 points over second place Smith (28). Simmons finished in third with 22 points, followed by Mount Holyoke (19) and Bryn Mawr (11).
The Blue opened the morning with a 14.80 second victory in the 2nd Novice race, finishing with an adjusted time of 20:44 to defeat Simmons (20:58.80) and Smith (20:58.84). The Blue continued to cruise in the Novice 8 event, racing to an adjusted time of 19:53 to finish well ahead of second place Simmons. The Sharks totaled a time of 20:38, taking second ahead of Smith (20:46), Mount Holyoke (21:33) and Bryn Mawr (22:42).
Wellesley's 2nd Varsity 8 followed suit in the third race, edging Smith 18:23 to 18:24 to help the Blue sweep the opening three races and secure 10 important points in the standings. Smith received eight points for finishing second in the 2nd Varisty 8 event. The Pioneers were followed by Mount Holyoke (19:35) in third, Simmons (21:04) in fourth, and Bryn Mawr (21:27) in fifth. Wellesley's third varsity boat was sixth (18:08) and Smith (18:49) rounded out the field in seventh.
Wellesley's victory in the 2nd Varsity proved to be critical, as the Blue finished the afternoon with 30 points, two ahead of Smith's 28, to win the team title. Wellesley seniors Kathryn Barth (Bellevue, Wash.) and Sydney Dollmeyer (Warren, Vt.) and first year Arielle Wons (Wayland, Mass.) all earned All-Seven Sisters honors for the Blue.
Sunday's race concludes the fall season for Wellesley crew, the team will return to action in the spring.
Wellesley Lineups for the 2016 Seven Sisters Championship