Inside NU usually does not cover the exploits of club sports, but Northwestern’s club rowing program deserves some recognition after a momentous weekend.
For the first time in nearly a decade, NU Crew competed at the Head of the Charles Regatta (HOCR) in Boston, Massachusetts, one of the most prestigious events in the rowing world, this past weekend.
The ‘Cats entered crews into two events: the Men’s Club 4+, coxed by senior Lillian Chu and featuring stroke to bow senior Jackson Lifford, senior Alexander Jimenez, junior Josh Maher, and freshman Valentin de la Pena, and the Women’s Collegiate 4+, coxed by senior Lucah Ueno and featuring stroke to bow junior Andrea Hancock, freshman Lila Caminiti, senior Abby Ekstrand, and senior Sarah Pickles.
This year’s edition of HOCR consisted of 65 events with 2,231 boat entries and 619 clubs from both the United States and abroad. The regatta’s course serpentines for 4,800 meters, about three miles, between Cambridge and Boston, presenting a number of sharp turns that contrast the relatively straight and calm Skokie Canal on which NU Crew practices.
On Saturday, the Men’s Club 4+, up against club programs such as Notre Dame and Virginia as well as Ivy League squads such as Harvard and Dartmouth, finished 30th out of 44. The Women’s Collegiate 4+ impressed on Sunday, finishing 13th out of 32 crews and defeating multiple D-3 programs, namely Colby and Wellesley. By virtue of its top half finish, the crew re-qualified for next year’s event at HOCR.
The rest of NU Crew’s varsity squad, along with two novice boats, went to the Iowa Chase Regatta on Coralville Lake, north of Iowa City, facing the likes of Colorado, Nebraska, and the Milwaukee School of Engineering. Three of its four boats medaled, highlighted by a first place finish for its Women’s Collegiate 4+, a lineup of senior Olivia Braun, senior Jane Leff, junior Harper McIntyre, senior Angelina Campanile, and senior Elaine Botros (cox).
The ‘Cats conclude their fall head racing season with the Bald Eagle Regatta in Indianapolis, Indiana, on November 6.