The William Smith College rowing team, ranked third in the nation, won the Liberty League Championship for the second straight year in Saratoga Springs today. The Heron varsity eight finished more than 12 seconds ahead of the runner-up to secure the program’s fifth league title since 2004.
The varsity eight of Kim Goral, Liz Hafer, Sinead Reilly, Lauren Blake-Whitney, Sarah Gordon, Katie Paige, Tess Wiggins, Alyssa Trebilcock and Jess Steketee flew down the 2,000-meter course on Fish Creek in 7:22.0. Tenth-ranked St. Lawrence crossed the line in second, 12.69 seconds back. RIT was third followed by Union.
The Herons also claimed victory in the second varsity eight race and the novice eight race.
Emily Davidowitz, Claire Brown, Maggie Smith, Elizabeth Hughes, Caroline DeWeirdt, Laura Cappio, Emily Shelden, Anola Stage, and Amanda Reusch built a full boat length lead right off the start and carried the 2V8 home in 7:32.5, more than 20 seconds ahead of runner-up St. Lawrence. RIT and Union rounded out the field.
The novice eight of Melanie Baltzer, Morgan Burgess, Emily Andersen, Emma Dow, Alexandra Clark, Kristen Brayden, Eliza Orrick, Alanna Dugan, and Emma Tiedemann won a head-to-head showdown against Union. The Herons posted a time of 7:55.1, over a minute in front of the Dutchwomen.
Skidmore’s A and B boats topped William Smith’s varsity four.
“The squad was simply excellent today,” William Smith Head Coach Sandra Chu said. “There was an elegant aggressiveness to all that they did. The eights were really hungry. They kept challenging themselves to get more margin and their racing had a decisiveness about it that was extremely fun to watch. We’re pleased that the 1V could bring home the league title because I think it really represents our entire program, the character with which it trains and races, and it’s ability to both support and push each other.”
William Smith is back on the water on May 5-6, when the Herons compete in the New York State Championships in Whitney Point.