The Hobart and William Smith sailing team finished second behind Boston College in the Gill/ICSA Coed Dinghy National Championship. HWS won a regatta-high seven races, but the Eagles produced an unparalleled performance in B Division to secure the Henry A. Morse Memorial Trophy by 27 points.
“We had good speed in all the conditions of this regatta, but in the last day and a half we really stuck to our game plan and aimed to stay in the top eight,” Hobart and William Smith Head Coach Scott Iklé ’84 said. “This group has worked really hard not just this year, but the last three years, as a team they have had a long hard road with a lot of ups and downs. They never gave up and I am really proud of how they approached this regatta. They did an outstanding job focusing.”
HWS won three of the six races completed on the first day of racing to seize the early lead. Junior skipper Sam Blouin and sophomore crew Bridget Nannig had the winning formula in B Division, placing first in both of their Day 1 races. Senior skipper David Thompson and sophomore crew Catherine Pelo also posted a victory in their fourth and final race.
The second day of racing started like the first with light wind, but the breeze built throughout the day. HWS didn’t have the same consistency in the changing conditions. Blouin and Nanning started the day with another win. Senior crew Sam Padnos joined Blouin in race six, but the tandem was disqualified and finished last in its first two races before bouncing back with another win. The end result was HWS slipped back to third place at the end of day two, trailing BC and Harvard.
Today’s racing saw Thompson with senior crew Hannah Littell and Blouin and Padnos gain victories in race 12 to pull HWS within 18 points of BC with two races in each division remaining, but the Eagles clinched the championship with victories in both A Division races and a third place showing in the ensuing B Division race.
HWS has appeared in nine consecutive ICSA Coed Dinghy National Championship. The team’s second place effort this season is its best since winning the 2005 national championship.