Lightweights Open the Season with a Sweep

On a chilly morning in Washington D.C., the No. 6 ranked University of Delaware Lightweights toppled the No. 10 ranked Georgetown University. With a cross-tailwind that built throughout the day, the Hens’ First, Second, and Third Eights, alongside a Varsity Four, swept their Hoya counterparts on the Potomac River, starting with the First Eight.

Blasting out of the gates at 48 strokes per minute, the Fightin’ 150s nudged their bow ball in front and began to inch away. Comprised of McCullough, Pereira, Hurley, Light, AbuAwad, Kungl, Buck, Marello, and coxswain Snow, the Blue Hens cruised across the line in a time of 5:52, one length over Georgetown. “First race nerves were tough for the boat,” Tristan Snow ’18 described afterward, “we’ll sort it out though. We’re feeling confident.” Fellow senior Cooper Hurley echoed that same sentiment.

“It was definitely a solid performance that we feel that we can easily improve upon,” he said. With a win under their belt already, the First Eight will move forward and continue finding speed over the upcoming spring break before heading off to race against the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Alongside a positive showing from the First boat, the Second and Third crews found similar success.

“Very solid base after a slightly rocky start,” said senior bow-seat Brendan Kaiser about the Second Varsity Eight race. He and his crew put lengths of open water between themselves and Georgetown, winning with a 6:08.5 compared to a 6:22.5. The Third Eight won by open as well. Also in the Third Eight race, the Delaware Fourth Eight’s steering cable snapped around 800 meters into the race, forcing them out of the competition. For the final race of the day, two Delaware Fours finished first and third, with a Georgetown Four between them. For the third year in a row, Delaware has swept Georgetown. Alongside the victory of their Lightweights, the Heavyweight program also took home gold at the Occoquan Sprints in Fairfax, Virginia.

Winning by open water, the combination of Ruggiero, Seidman, Malanoski, Trunley, Gaydosh, Canning, Fraser, Rumaker, and coxswain Filby put distance between themselves and the field. “It was fine,” senior Jake Filby explained. “We’re still a raw group after some shakeups and some athletes coming back from illness. Getting used to a full 2k race at base cadence is huge for this group and I think that with a week of spring break training coming up, we’ll be in much better shape for the future. I’m excited.” The heavyweights get their next taste of action at the Murphy Cup Regatta on March 31st.

Keep up with the Hens on Instagram at @Delawarecrew and check the website and Facebook for weekly updates throughout the spring.