April 19, 2009

No. 3 Lightweights Defeat No. 6 Cornell, Sweep No. 7 Dartmouth

April 19, 2009

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DERBY, Conn. - In a busy day of races, the No. 3 Yale men's lightweight crew team brought home some big wins against rivals Dartmouth and Cornell. The Bulldogs played host to No. 7 Dartmouth for the Durand Cup early in the day, then hosted No. 6 Cornell later in the afternoon. In a long day of races at the Gilder Boathouse, the Bulldogs won all five races against Dartmouth in the morning then won three of five races against Cornell later in the day.

The lightweights had been working hard all week to make the necessary adjustments to improve their times. The Bulldogs had been working on timing and rhythm so as to get better synchronized in their movements and work better as a unit. This hard work showed in Saturday's races, as the Elis were markedly faster than last week.

In the morning races, the Y150 squad easily won the Durand Cup against Dartmouth, winning the varsity eight race by a wide margin of 7.3 seconds. The closest race of the day was the first freshman eight race, which Yale won by a margin of 1.8 seconds. Otherwise, the Bulldogs handily won the second varsity eight, the varsity four and the second freshman eight races. Exceptionally, the Elis' second varsity eight boat crossed the finish line 11.9 seconds ahead of Dartmouth.

Then in the afternoon race, the Bulldogs were able to bring home some big wins against rivals Cornell. The Yale varsity eight boat was able to secure a crucial win against the three-time defending national champions by a margin of 1.5 seconds. The Elis also took wins in the second varsity eight and third varsity eight races to complete a successful day of racing.

Though Cornell has won the national title for the past three years running, it has had a tough start so far this year. The Big Red have lost three rowers to graduation and one to injury. Additionally, given its northern location, the weather does not allow Cornell to get out on the water for practice as early as some other schools. Perhaps as a result of these reasons, No. 6 Cornell lost decisively to No. 1 Princeton last weekend in the Platt Cup.

However, Cornell had made certain improvements over the course of the week and it was much faster this Saturday than it was last weekend against Princeton. Given these factors, while the Bulldogs would have liked to have won by a wider margin, they are nonetheless happy to have gotten the win, and will look to continue their positive momentum against Harvard and Princeton this coming weekend.

Full Results

Durand Cup

Varsity Eight
Yale 5:41.4
Dartmouth 5:48.1

Second Varsity Eight
Yale 6:04.0
Dartmouth 6:15.9

Varsity Four
Yale 'A' 7:01.8
Yale 'B' 7:07.7
Dartmouth 7:18.6

Freshman Eight
Yale 6:08.8
Dartmouth 6:10.6

Second Freshman Eight
Yale 6:43.9
Dartmouth 6:49.8

Cornell Race

Varsity Eight
Yale 5:41.2
Cornell 5:42.7

Second Varsity Eight
Yale 5:51.8
Cornell 5:54.9

Third Varsity Eight
Yale 5:54.2
Cornell 5:57.9

Freshman Eight
Cornell 5:51.8
Yale 5:54.3

Second Freshman Eight
Cornell 6:11.8
Yale 6:37.9

Report By Arsi Sefaj '11, Yale Sports Publicity