Nina Streeter And Chris Doyle
More Than Just a Pair of Lightweights
For three years, seniors Nina Streeter and Chris Doyle have rowed as a pair.
This year, as co-captains of the highly touted Radcliffe lightweight crew team, they also lead as a pair.
Streeter, a four-year varsity oarswoman, is in her second year as captain, and Doyle in her first. Members of the team, which placed second in the country at last year's nationals, say the two have very different qualities that mesh well.
"Chris is very personable and Nina is very driven," says senior Gretchen Rollwagen, who rowed with Doyle on the novice team freshman year, and has rowed with Streeter since sophomore year.
"What makes Nina a good captain is that she is attentive and responsible. She is a national champion [a member of the 1982 varsity] and a role model for the rest of the team," says Coach K.C. Dietz.
"Chris is especially technically proficient. She really understands what makes a good boat. She has to have an internal sense of rhythm, to feel the boat moving underneath her, set a pace and not change it," the coach adds.
The captains row stroke and seven, with Doyle setting the cadence for the whole boat and Streeter for the starboard side. The two agree that their pairing works to the team's advantage.
"When we're rowing, our abilities dove-tail and that carries over into our relationship as captains," says Doyle. "We work very well together."
"We have different attitudes," Streeter says. "Chris works really hard, but she doesn't appear to be hard-core."
As captain last year, Streeter says she worried that the team felt she was pushing her expectations on them. "Having Chris as a co-captain really helps to mitigate those feelings," the Wenham, Mass. native says.
"There is a lot of respect for what each person is trying to do...When you are out on the water, everyone is on equal terms despite differences in abilities and strengths. You have to believe that everyone is giving their best effort," adds Doyle, a Pittsford, N.Y. native.
After rowing in high school, Streeter made varsity as a freshman. "Our team was very good--we won all our races by at least a length of open water, including [Eastern]. Sprints and nationals," she recalls, adding. "We could have that kind of team this year--we have the potential."
"It is good for the team to have Chris as a captain with Nina, because Chris is proof that you don't have to have rowed before college to do it well," Rollwagen says of the relatively inexperienced captain.
"I'm incredibly dedicated to this," Streeter says. After rowing at the national camp all last summer, she is already planning for next summer's national team tryouts.
Streeter, a History concentrator, says she anticipates going into "the big bad financial world" after graduating, and adds that to a certain degree, she works her academics around crew.
She says she hopes to finish up her spring courses in time to "put in some serious training" before trying out for the national team.
Ban says Doyle, who is a Social Studies concentrator, "Crew is not the most important thing in my life. I consider myself an athlete, and crew is very important, but academics come first."
Sophomore Jill Nichols says of the captains, "They made an effort to get to know all the new people on the team. They work really hard, and they make you want to work hard too."
"It is important that all three of the [lightweight] teams feel they are in the same organization, Nichols says, adding, "I think it is key that all the teams can work together," and the captains make this easier.
"I think we have a great team, really nice people. That is what has kept me rowing," says Streeter. "The people are fantastic."