WORCESTER, Mass. -- Wellesley College Crew claimed its fifth straight New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEMWAC) Championship on Saturday morning on Lake Quinsigamond. With the victory, Wellesley earns the conference's automatic bid to the 2015 NCAA Rowing Championships.
Paced by first place finishes in the Varsity Eight, Second Varsity Eight and Novice races and a runner-up performance in the Third Varsity Eight race, Wellesley also earned the Florence Jope Smith Cup, awarded to the school with the highest number of points from the overall results. The Blue finished with a total of 36 points to outpace Smith (28), WPI (24), Simmons (12), Coast Guard (8), Clark (6) and Mount Holyoke (4).
Wellesley's Varsity Eight (V8) turned in a time of 6:52.5 to top second place Smith (7:02.08) by 9.58 seconds in the the final race of the morning. Third-place WPI (7.07.06), fourth-place Coast Guard (7:11.81), fifth-place Simmons (7:14.68), sixth-place Clark (7:25.27) and Mount Holyoke (7:36.63) rounded out the field in the V8 race.
The V8 victory sealed the conference championship for the Blue after Wellesley's Second Varsity Eight (2V8) turned in a mark of 7:03.32 to give the Blue the top time in both the V8 and 2V8 events. Smith (7:07.66) and WPI (7:12.55) also finished in second and third in the 2V8 field, followed by Simmons (7:41.86) and Clark (8:35.42).
WPI grabbed the title in the Third Varsity Eight (3V8) race, finishing just tenths of a second ahead of the Blue with a time of 6:27.8. Wellesley was a close second at 6:28.4, while Smith (6:54.9) and Simmons (7:13.5) took third and fourth in the four team field. Wellesley's Novice Eight (N8) also opened the day with a victory, topping Smith (7:40.8) and Mount Holyoke (8:23.8) with a time of 7:25.9 in the three-team race.
Finally, following today's competition, the NEWMAC announced that Wellesley sophomore Kathryn Barth (Bellevue, Wash.) has been named the 2015 Women's Rower of the Year, while first year Stephanie Kim (Wellesley, Mass.) has been named the 2015 NEWMAC Coxswain of the Year. Barth and Kim both earned a place on the NEWMAC All-Conference First Team, along with junior co-captain Loren Lock and sophomore Anna Hakes.
Wellesley's Lineups for the 2015 NEWMAC Championship: