The William Smith rowing team captured its fourth Liberty League championship and first since 2007 today. The Heron varsity eight, ranked fifth in the nation in the latest coaches poll, outdueled No. 9 St. Lawrence on the Saints home course.
Kim Goral, Liz Hafer, Maggie Smith, Lauren Blake-Whitney, Sarah Gordon, Katie Paige, Tess Wiggins, Claire Brown, and Jess Steketee advanced to the final with a 13.5 second victory over Skidmore. The Herons grabbed an open water lead jsut 25 strokes into the race and bested the defending champion Saints by four seconds, covering the 2,000-meter course in 6:13.5.
The conference championship is awarded to the winner of the varsity eight race.
“We’re absolutely pleased to win the league championship,” Head Coach Sandra Chu said. “St. Lawrence is a formidable opponent. This is a great stepping stone for next weekend and for ECACs.”
The William Smith novice eight also emerged victorious, winning its final only race over Union. Ariel Nathan, Kate Manilenko, Arianna White, Christine Reighley, Sophie Jenkins, Sinead Reilly, Grace Walter, Katie Lehmann, and Ava Pavao crossed the finish line in 6:42.3. Union was a distant second in 7:13.6.
The Heron second varsity eight was less than two seconds away from giving the Herons a sweep of the eights events. St. Lawrence posted a winning time of 6:39.6, just ahead of William Smith (6:41.0).
The Saints also won the varsity four event. The Herons did not progress out of the heats in that event.
The Herons will be back on the water on April 30 and May 1 when they compete in the New York State Rowing Championships in Whitney Point.