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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Friday, May 24, 2024

Jumbos see mixed success, disappointment in weekend regattas

2014-09-20-Hurst-Bowl
Katie Levinson (A '15), left, and Emily Lynn (A '15), right, compete at the Hurst Bowl on Sept. 20, 2014

The co-ed sailing team competed in multiple regattas this past weekend: the New England Sloop Championship, the Truxton Umstead Trophy, the Yale Women’s Inter-Conference, the Captain Hurst Bowl, the Great Herring Pond Open, the Norm Reid Team Race, the MIT Invite and the Franklin J. Lane Trophy Team Race, coming away with mixed results. 

A low moment for the team occurred in the three-person yngling race at the New England Sloop Championship hosted by Salve Regina University this past weekend. The Tufts team ultimately placed sixth out of eight teams in the competition, with losses to Brown, Dartmouth and eventual champion Harvard, missing out on their chance to compete at the national championships.

“We sailed really well and are disappointed not to be going to nationals,” junior tri-captain Liz Fletcher said.

Fletcher was part of a team that included senior James Moody and first-year Sammy Shea. The team was new to the ynglings, and its preparation was key.

“Our match racing team prepared a huge amount for the New England Match Racing Championship this past weekend," Fletcher said. "We practiced against alumna, studied scenarios and videos and cut our body weight for the ynglings. We had never sailed a yngling as a team before, and it took the first couple races of the round robin to get used to the new boat.”

A critical mistake on the first day ended up costing the team. In the second race, the Tufts boat punctured a hole in the Harvard boat. While the error was unintentional, the team was punished; points were deducted from Tufts and Harvard was awarded the win.

“Hitting Harvard…was a factor of not knowing the boats very well and served as a wake up call ... Afterwards, we focused in and found our groove in ynglings,” Fletcher said.

After winning the rest of the opening-round races, Tufts earned the fourth seed -- but had to face Dartmouth, one of the best teams in the tournament, on Sunday.

“We lost the first race and won the second race, leaving it to the third race to determine which team went on to semifinals," Fletcher said. "Dartmouth squeaked out ahead of us in the third race and went on to the semis. It was hard to be angry at the end of the day because we sailed a phenomenal set of races with hardly any errors."

Dartmouth ended up losing to Harvard in the finals, with Yale, Bowdoin, Brown, Tufts, Rhode Island and Boston University rounding out the rankings in that order.

While there was disappointment in Salve Regina, there was elation at the Franklin L. Jane Trophy; the Tufts team came in second to Boston College in the team race.

“I feel like we sailed well this weekend ... We sent our C team and BC sent their A team, so the competition was heated, but we were in first place right until the last race, and getting second to BC's A team is a great accomplishment; [it's] basically like getting first," first-year Sarah Bunney said.

Another high moment for the team occurred at the Truxton Umsted Regatta at Navy. The regatta consisted of four divisions, A through D, with one boat in each. The C and D divisions featured a one-man Olympic dinghy called a laser, and Tufts was able to finish second out of 19 teams in the C division.

“Many of the competitors in C division -- including our athletes Alp Rodopman and Sandy Beatty, both class of 2017 -- have Olympic aspirations in the laser class," senior tri-captain Caroline Atwood said. "This makes it a particularly competitive division, and the fact that we came away with a second is impressive not only for Tufts, but [it] also bodes well for our athletes as they go on to compete after college."

As for the rest of the competitors in the Truxton Umsted Regatta, Tufts finished ninth in the B and D divisions and 14th in the A division. The Jumbos' final scores overall totaled 631, which placed them seventh out of 19 teams. The College of Charleston won the event with a score of 371.

Tufts will take part in seven more regattas this weekend. The team is approaching the crux of its season, which includes the big qualifier for the Atlantic Coast Dinghy Championships. 

“It is time to start taking all the lessons learned over the last month or so of racing and apply them," Atwood said. "So far, consistency has been our issue. We know that we are good enough to compete on the same level as the best, but haven't been able to sail clean enough races to have a chance to compete with that top third of the fleet every time, which is what it takes to win not just the race, but the regatta.”