May 27, 2014

No. 1 Bulldogs to Compete at National Championship Semifinal

 Top-Nine Finish at Semifinals Will Earn Bulldogs a Berth to Nationals May 29-30

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Tuesday the No. 1 women's sailing team will begin racing at the Sperry Top-Sider College Sailing Women's National Championship.

This year, the Championship is held at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. on the Severn River. The regatta is a four-day-long event with two days of semifinals and two days of finals. Different than last year's format, there are no teams that directly move on to the finals by placing highly at the qualifying regatta within their conference. The semifinals, taking place on May 27-28, will be "divided into two 14-team regattas" comprised of teams that "have qualified from their conferences to compete in this portion of the championship," according to the ICSA (Intercollegiate Sailing Association). The finals, taking place on May 29-30, will then be sailed by the top nine finishers from each group. The winner at the end of the regatta will take home the Gerald C. Miller trophy.

Traveling with the team are seniors Eugenia Custo Greig, Marlena Fauer and Amanda Salvesen, juniors Katherine Gaumond and Morgan Kiss, sophomores Charlotte Belling and Marly Isler and freshman Clara Robertson.

Kiss and Fauer will be skippering while Belling, Custo Greig, Gaumond and Salvesen will all be available to crew. Isler and Robertson, having represented the Bulldogs throughout the year, will be there to support the team in any way they can.

After a long and productive post season, the Bulldogs feel mentally and physically prepared for the racing they are about to face. Both the coed and the women's teams spent two weeks at Yale training both on the water and in the gym. Belling comments that "this year's post season was a great opportunity for the team to sail longer sessions in a variety of conditions" and "helped prepare everyone for the type of racing we will see at nationals."

Newly elected junior captain Gaumond travels today to meet the team in Annapolis. Her leadership throughout the semester has played an important role on the team and she hopes to work with former senior captain Fauer in creating the best possible environment for the Bulldogs to succeed at this high level regatta.

Gaumond has been a valuable member to both the coed and women's sailing teams. While she spent most of this year sailing for the coed team, she has had much success in the past with the women's team. Last year, she and Fauer sailed together at the Emily Wick Trophy hosted by the Coast Guard Academy and won their division by 25 points. Gaumond was also part of the winning B division team at the Women's National Championship last May.

Gaumond is confident in the team's ability, saying "we have such talent on our team this year and so many experienced underclassmen." "After an incredible performance all spring," she continues, the team only needs to "avoid big mistakes in order to win."

"We are just looking for execution," says Gaumond.

Racing began at 9:30 a.m. today. Results can be found at http://scores.collegesailing.org/s14/sperry-women-west-semis/.


Report filed by Natalya Doris '17, Yale Sports Publicity.