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Women's crew takes Brunelle Cup

MIT Wins Brunelle Cup

By Karen Chenausky

The women's varsity crew team won the Brunelle Cup Saturday despite a strong headwind over the Charles River. MIT beat three other crews to sweep the regatta, its second sweep of the season.

Since the wind was so strong, the officials decided not to use the stakeboats moored on the starting line and had a floating start instead. Originally, the race was supposed to be between MIT, Simmons College, and Mount Holyoke College. Wellesley College, however, was in town for two lightweight races, so they entered boats in all the races at the last minute.

MIT was behind until almost the 1500-meter mark. Coming past the boathouse, MIT was behind Mount Holyoke and ahead of Simmons and Wellesley. MIT then turned up the power and simply cruised past Mount Holyoke in a smooth, fast, and exciting last 500 meters. MIT won with a time of 7:29, followed by Mount Holyoke at 7:31, Simmons at 7:34, and Wellesley in last at 7:37.

The varsity lineup for this race was: Trish Roxas '89 (cox), Laura Opsasnick '90 (stroke), Becky Dumas '90, Sue Perrin '91, Belle Young '89, Lynore Abbott '91, Gwenn Shelton '91, Wendy Rowell '90, and Magda Nour '89 (bow).

The second-priority boat last weekend was the lightweight four, which raced against Wellesley and Radcliffe. This race went much less well for MIT. Whereas the varsity boat has had basically the same rowers in it since the beginning of the season, the lightweights on the women's teams have been shuffled around between various lineups. This accounted for the rough, slightly unmatched feeling of the boat, which lost to both crews with a time of 9:03. Radcliffe, whose lightweight program is very strong, won with a time of 8:34, and Wellesley came in second at 8:50. According to junior varsity coxswain Paula Han '90, who saw the race from the official's launch, "[MIT] looked a lot smoother than Wellesley."

The lightweight lineup this week included Ellen Dotson '91 (coxswain), Laura Beecroft '91 (stroke), Karen Chenausky '89, Lola Matysiak '91, and Debora Chen '89 (bow).

The JV eights race was also frustrating for MIT, which came in behind Wellesley and Mount Holyoke with a time of 8:42. Wellesley won with a time of 8:24, and Mount Holyoke was second at 8:32. The JV lineup this weekend was Paula Han '89 (cox), Carol Waldmann '89 (stroke), Anne Khaminwa '89, Kristine AuYeung '91, Kia Freeman '89, Debbie Bein '91, Kris Newton '91, Caroline Lee '91, and Joanna Bacon '89 (bow).

Wellesley's crashing the regularly scheduled open races (open to people of any weight class) caused some consternation to the first novice eight, which beat Simmons and Mount Holyoke decisively, but lost to Wellesley. Wellesley's winning time was 7:39, MIT finished in 7:51, Mount Holyoke in 8:00 flat, and Simmons in 8:04.

The MIT lineup was Lena Hwang '92 (cox), Becky Zavitoski '91 (stroke), Zibi Turtle '92, Lindi Emoungu '92, Holly Simpson '92, Paula Ferguson '90, Kris Clark '92, Amy Bowen '92, and Maresi Berry '92 (bow). Ferguson said that coach Tim Tiffany worked his novices hard this week. "He wanted us to win this week. If it hadn't been for Wellesley, we would've done it."

MIT's second novice eight lost to all three other crews in its race, with a time of 9:03 to winner Mount Holyoke's 7:53. Wellesley was second at 8:12, and Simmons third with 8:57. The MIT lineup included: Karla Morrow '92 (cox), Cynthia Holcroft '92 (stroke), Rebecca Redding '92, Barb Sigmund '92, Rachel Huggins '92, Gassia Salibian '92, Jen Hill '92, Nancy Koay '92, and Elizabeth Yap '92 (bow).

MIT next races Northeastern and Boston University on the Charles in the Smith Cup Regatta on Saturday. The last time MIT won the Smith Cup was in 1983, when Elizabeth Bradley '83 -- who competed in the 1988 Seoul Olympics -- rowed stroke for the Engineers.

(Karen Chenausky '89 is a member of the women's crew team.)