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Women's crew team places well at regattas

By Becky Dumas

and Laura Opsasnick

The women's crew team rowed in two regattas over Columbus Day weekend.

On Saturday, the varsity placed second behind host Mount Holyoke in both the morning heat and the afternoon final. The morning race was a 2.5 mile head piece. The top four boats would race in the afternoon final. MIT defeated Williams, UMass, and Simmons to easily make the final.

In the afternoon race, a 1500 meter sprint, MIT was quick off the line and led Mount Holyoke by two seats with 500 m gone. But as the boats settled into the race, Mount Holyoke pulled away and at the finish line was up by a length and a half. The race was clearly between MIT and Mount Holyoke as the Williams and Simmons crews were far behind.

In the varsity boat were Barb Sigmund '92 (cox), Becky Dumas '90 (stroke), Laura Opsasnick '90, Beth Jones '90, Sue Perrin '91, Gwen Shelton '91, Lynore Abbott '91, Laura Beecroft '91, and Jerelyn Watanabe '90 (bow).

The junior varsity eight placed third overall after finishing fourth in the morning. The crew of Liz Yap '92 (cox), Wendy Rowell '90 (stroke), Anne Khaminwa '90, Lola Matysiak '91, Amy Bowen '92, Holly Simpson '92, Rachel Huggins '92, Karla Morrow '92, and Deb Bein '90 (bow) fell to Mount Holyoke and Williams in the final.

Three novice eights rowed in their first race in mixed boats. The novices finished eighth, 11th, and 12th out of 18 boats.

At the Head of the Connecticut on Sunday, an eight of Sigmund, Dumas, Opsasnick, Shelton, Rowell, Khaminwa, Abbott, Beecroft, and Watanabe finished sixth out of 26 boats. MIT's time for the 3.5 mile course was 20:16.54 compared to a winning Dartmouth time of 19:24.70. MIT had tough time passing two Smith boats midway through the race. In head races, crews being overtaken are supposed to give way to a passing boat. In this case, Smith was acting more like a blocker, not allowing MIT to pass. Finally, MIT squeezed between both boats and quickly moved through.

MIT's lightweight four of Yap, Beecroft, Sigmund, Bowen, and Cynthia Holcroft '92 finished tenth out of thirteen boats. Their time was 25:34.59. The largest regatta of the fall, the Head of the Charles, is the next big event for the crew team on Oct. 22.

(Becky Dumas '90 and Laura Opsasnick '90 are co-captains of the women's crew team.)