Sailors have another winning weekend

by James Lamb | 5/2/03 5:00am

Just a week after the lady sailors qualified for the ISCA Women's National Championship, the co-ed squads went down to the wire to claim a berth for their own Big Dance.

With all the thrills and heart-stopping moments of the NCAA basketball tourney, Dartmouth started out the first portion of the event against the stiffest competition in the country. Sailors Scott Hogan '04, Amo Loring '04, Peter "It's Sea Man" Fleming '05, Liz Hyon '05, Andrew Loe '06, Elisabeth Kreter '05, Karl Johnson '06, Todd Whitehead '06 and Garrett "Let's do this one for The Captain" Holmes '05 found themselves in a tough spot after the 66-race round robin.

In fact, the stakes were so high that in a gut wrenching yet delicious twist, it would come down to the very last race to determine just which team would win the final coveted spot to go to the ISCA Championships.

Just like its counterpart Syracuse -- a team that everyone overlooked in the Final Four -- the Dartmouth sailing team managed to pull out what's called a "one-two" in the final race, taking advantage of the conditions to sail two teams to the finish, giving them the edge over Boston College.

"The majority of the races this weekend came down to inches," commented the sophomore pair of Hyon and Kreter. "We are really excited to qualify because we knew we had the ability if we sailed to our potential."

This all-important third-place finish qualifies the team as a New England district representative at the ICSA Team Racing National Championships to be held in Michigan at the Crescent Sail Club in Grosse Point on June 5-7, 2003.

Harvard and Tufts also made the cut, and although all three of the winning teams are among the most elite in the nation, coach Brian Doyle put things in perspective. "Dartmouth is the only team in the top-10 whose practice site has been frozen in until last week," he said.

The freshman sailors were also in action over the weekend, competing at the Priddy Trophy put on by Boston College. Rookie nerves from tricky conditions such as steady rain and formidable winds were not a problem for the team of Emily East '06 and Christina Duncan '06. The pair completed 12 races to finish seventh of 16 teams represented.

From the young to the elder, senior sea dogs Brian Mason '03 and Andra Pool '03 enjoyed familiar surroundings at the Western Series Regatta hosted right here at home. Their Dartmouth A team raced consistent, aggressive sailing to win the event outright. The Dartmouth B team of Lindsay Reardon '03 and Andrea Lauerman '06 posted a solid finish at the fourth spot, out of eight teams who competed.

With two national championship qualifications down, the sailors turn their attention to the New England Fleet Racing Championships this weekend, co-hosted by M.I.T. and Harvard.

History is on Dartmouth's side, as the Big Green is the defend-ing champion from last year. Again, the drama will be intense, as qualifications for the ICSA National Fleet Championship will be handed down to the top four teams.