April 17, 2004
The Clemson rowing team finished third overall at the ACC Rowing Championships held this morning on Lake Hartwell. Number-six ranked Virginia claimed its fifth conference title, winning the regatta with 40 points. Twentieth-ranked Duke tallied 25 points to finish second while Clemson finished third with 23 points and North Carolina finished fourth with 10 points.
The championship began with the Varsity 4+ race. With a smooth start both Clemson and Virginia pulled away early. Virginia gained the lead in the first 500 meters, but the Tigers remained with them through 1000 meters. By 1200 meters, the Cavaliers had open water on Clemson and the Tigers had a solid lead over Duke while North Carolina trailed the Blue Devils. The Tigers maintained open water and took second in 7:50.8. Virginia finished first in 7:45.1, while Duke took third in 8:06.1, and North Carolina came in fourth in 8:24.7.
The Novice 8+ began with a dead even race for first and second between North Carolina and Virginia. At 500 meters the Cavaliers made their move and held the first place spot to the finish. Clemson battled back with North Carolina to take second and by 750 meters they had moved to a four seat lead over the Tar Heels. In the last 400 meters Clemson challenged Virginia back with sprint to finish half a boat length within the Cavaliers and open water over North Carolina. Virginia had a winning time of 7:11.2 with the Tigers trailing 2.7 seconds behind in 7:13.9. North Carolina finished in 7:25.9.
Virginia pulled away early in the Second Varsity 8+ and remained in the lead leaving Clemson and Duke vying for second place. A battle ensued between Clemson and Duke with the Tigers coming within two seats of the Blue Devils during the middle 1000 meters. In the last 500 meters Duke took the lead to finish 1.9 seconds ahead of the Tigers who had open water on North Carolina. Virginia pulled to a first place finish in 6:47.1 with Duke in second in 6:56.7, Clemson taking third in 6:58.6 and North Carolina following in 7:17.1.
The Varsity 8+ competition was the final race of the day. In the first 500 meters everyone was in contact with one another. Virginia surged into first as Duke challenged, moving into second. Clemson followed closely into third. In the middle 1000 meters, Virginia took open water on Duke and Duke did the same to Clemson. The Tigers fought against Duke in the last 800 meters to close the gap. In the final sprint, Virginia (6:34.3) walked away with open water on Duke (6:42.6) and the Blue Devils pulled open water on Clemson (6:49.9). North Carolina finished in fourth (6:57.0).
Juniors Mary Nell Green and Robin Mescher were named to the All-ACC team. The nine-member team is made up of eight rowers and one coxswain from all four ACC schools. This is the first time they have received this honor.
“It was a wonderful, festive atmosphere,” said head coach Susie Lueck. “We had nice weather and the staff did a great job pulling off this championship event.”
Lueck on the Varsity 4+ race: “The Varsity 4+ stepped up after having limited experience rowing together and had a great race.”
Lueck on the Novice 8+ race: “The Novice 8+ had an awesome race and I am very proud of the competitiveness of finishing within three seconds of Virginia.. It speaks to the great future Clemson has ahead of us.”
Lueck on the Second Varsity 8+ race: “The Second Varsity 8+ had a strong race and finished very pleased, but not satisfied and hungry for regionals.”
Lueck on the Varsity 8+ race: “The Varsity 8+ showed a lot of heart, had a great start and a solid sprint. They are ready to make some improvements for regionals.”
The Tigers will return to the water on Tuesday, May 4 as they host Central Florida.
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