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Varsity Crews Struggle at Easterns


Going into yesterday's Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges (EARC) Sprints regatta, the Harvard men's heavyweight and lightweight crews had high hopes for a strong finish in the conference's culminating race.

Unfortunately for both Crimson crews, the races ended a bit on disappointing side.

Based on previous results, the heavyweights came into the race as the third-fastest crew in the field behind Princeton and Penn.

But the Crimson finished the regatta in fifth with a time of 5:50.28, well behind Princeton's 5:42.1. Coming in ahead of Harvard were Brown at 5:46.99, Penn at 5:48.91 and Wisconsin at 5:49.26. Northeastern came in sixth at 5:54.88.

The lightweights did not fare much better.

Entering as the top contender to Princeton, the odds-on favorite, Harvard saw a surprising surge from Columbia, which displaced the Crimson for the second spot behind the blistering Tiger boat.

The bright spot on the day was the strong performance from Harvard's heavyweight freshman boats.

In both the first and second freshman boats, the heavyweights stroked their way to the victory.

"That's a big step," varsity captain Henry Nuzum said. "That 's a tribute to Bill Manning. He's a first-year coach this year and they are undefeated so far. They have a better work ethic than I've ever seen with any freshman. It bodes well for the future."

The first freshman boat came in with a time of 5:55.2, a three-quarter-length win over Brown, which finished in 5:57.88.

The second boat won its race with a time of 6:38.1, a two-second margin ahead of Northeastern.

The varsity heavyweights still felt the bitterness of defeat, however.

"The other crews were faster than us," Nuzum said. "It's a pretty simple sport. There were four crews out there who were better than us today."

Two of the surprising crews in the race were Brown and Wisconsin.

"[Brown] gave Princeton a race tighter than anyone has given them all season," Nuzum said. "They've improved since we saw them last."

According to Nuzum, the Badgers were somewhat of a mystery before yesterday. Wisconsin has won many of its races, but the competition had been generally weak.

"They were a dark horse," he said. "They were seeded seventh and they upset Yale in the heat. They don't get that many races in, and their opponents aren't very tough."

In the men's lightweight final, the Crimson could not overcome a strong-and-getting-stronger Princeton crew despite its a solid performance.

"We put out a much better effort than we did two weeks ago," co-captain Tom Fallows said, referring to a loss to Princeton on the Charles.

Princeton won with a time of 5:50.4, with Columbia sneaking in for a second-place finish of 5:52.12. The Crimson came in just behind the Lions at 5:52.83.

"We busted off the line with Princeton and Columbia," Fallows said. "It was tight the whole way through. We were spending everything we had to keep up with those guys. Columbia just nipped us at the end."

The Crimson was able to keep up with the Tigers and the Lions with a lower base cadence.

"We set ourselves up by matching speed at a lower cadence, but we weren't able to follow that up with an all-out sprint," Fallows said. "We still have room for improvement [in sharpening our technique]."

What is most impressive was the continuation of a season-long surge by the Tigers.

"Princeton was dominant again," Fallows said. "What's impressive is that Princeton has also improved."

But the Crimson was also able to improve on earlier performances, although there is still much to work on, Fallows said.

"We came away from this race saying that we did what we set out to do, which was to row a complete race, and hit our technical along the way," Fallows said. "But Princeton was just too fast for us."

In other races yesterday, the second varsity heavyweight boat finished in fifth place with a time of 6:00.42, just over ten seconds behind first-place Princeton.

The second varsity lightweight crew finished in third behind Princeton's 5:54.8 and Rutgers' 5:56.91 with a time of 5:58.6

The third varsity lightweight crew finished in third with a time of 6:56.3, just behind Cornell's second-place boat and well behind Princeton's 6:38.1.

The first freshman lightweight crew was kept from the finals after turning in a time of 6:25.6 in its heat.

The second freshman lightweight boat finished in second place with a time of 7:10.2, five seconds behind Navy.

The lightweights will row in the Intercollegiate Rowing Association National Championships in three weeks at Camden, N. J.

The heavyweights' next regatta will be the 134th meeting between Harvard and Yale in four weeks in a four-mile race on the Thames River in New London, Conn.

"We have to focus on Yale," Nuzum said. "It's a different race. It's a different kind of season."

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