It was a relatively tough season for the men's crew program.
Despite a strong start in the finals of the Intercollegiate Rowing Association National Championship, the Harvard lightweight men's crew was unable to sustain its momentum, falling behind Princeton and Columbia in its pursuit of a second straight national title.
And the heavyweight men had to spend the second half of its spring season without three team members, expelled for disciplinary reasons.
Record: 6-0 (heavyweights), 5-2 (lightweights)
Coach: Harry Parker (heavyweights), Charlie Butt (lightweights)
Highlights: Lightweights place third at Nationals, second at Eastern Sprints; heavyweights place second at Eastern Sprints
Seniors: Shahm Al-Wir, Nick Edmonds, David Ellis, William Evans, Phil Kaufman, Jonathan Kibera, John Lanken, Bill Martin-Doyle, Wolf Moser, Nick Rosen, Geoffrey Sahs, Christopher Sims, Rob Walsh
The 1998 spring season started out on April 4 at the San Diego Crew Classic. The varsity boat has claimed this title seven times, but came in fifth place this year.
The race, however, did not by any means foreshadow the success of the 1998 varsity crew, for the season was still young and the crew proved that it had much potential for improvement.
"We're taking our season one race at a time," said captain Wolfgang Moser after the race in San Diego.
That strategy certainly worked for the rest of April and beginning of May. The varsity boat went on to win its next four regattas, defeating Brown by 5.95 seconds, Princeton and MIT by 0.40 and 36 seconds respectively, Penn and Navy by 4.1 and 11.9 seconds respectively and Northeastern by 2.9 seconds.
By the time it was all over, Harvard was ranked number one in the East.
The Penn/Navy Adams Cup race was a crucial one for the Harvard crew. Harvard was trailing for most of the length of the course, but managed to pull away in the last quarter of the 2000-meter race. Harvard had shown its ability to handle pressing situations.
Northeastern and the Smith Cup awaited Harvard the next weekend. Not even the sudden and unexpected departure of three team members--sophomore Samuel Brooks, senior Connor Spreng and senior coxswain Dipanjan Banerjee--after an alleged rock-throwing incident was enough to stop Harvard's charge.
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