Sailing looks to form new team identity for fall season

by Jake Kahane | 10/1/07 3:02am

After the departure of last year's seniors like Erik Storck '07, sailing is in search of a new formula for success.
by Philip Woram / The Dartmouth

Early in this fall season, the Big Green sailing team has already sent some of its athletes to regattas around the northeast. At a Northern Series regatta held at Dartmouth, the Big Green was able to place second, behind the University of Vermont. The highlight of the race came with the first place finish by Matthew Cohen '10 and Christina Clark '10.

However, the season has not been completely successful. Dartmouth was only able to finish thirteenth in the Loder trophy race at the University of New Hampshire last weekend. Dartmouth sent its freshmen sailors to this UNH competition, many of whom are still learning the ropes of competitive collegiate sailing.

That same weekend, the more experienced Dartmouth sailors traveled to Tufts to compete in the Hood Trophy. With an overall place of 14th, Dartmouth was able to finish right in the middle of the pack. In the 15 races for the A division, skipper Ben

Sampson '08 and crew Betsy Bryant '08 were able to finish strongly at ninth place, only five points back of Harvard's squad. A stout Tufts team was able to take the victory at their home regatta.

The New England Sloop championships were held at Brown University on the weekend of Sept. 22. Senior skipper Luke Hathaway '08 and his experienced crew of Andrew Geffken '08 and Ben Bier '10 were able to pilot their boat through shifting winds in Newport Rhode Island to a solid fifth place finish. Finally, Dartmouth sent Kendall Reilley '09 to Roger Williams University to compete in the New England Women's Singlehanded Championships. Reilley was able to bring home a ninth place finish out of 25 competitors. Reilley was two spots behind Tufts' Kaity Storck, sister to Coach John and Erik.

This weekend, the sailing team again competed in three regattas. The Big Green sent competitors to MIT, the United States Coast Guard Academy and Boston University. Results were not yet available at press time.

"This fall season is a good starting point for us. We knew we were going to have to step up to fill in for the loss of [Erik] Storck this year. Our teams have been competitive, giving us a good starting point. With our fall training, things are looking pretty good this season," Hathaway said.

Dartmouth sailing veterans like Hathaway know how important their fall training will be. With long winters, Mascoma Lake tends not to thaw until just before the start of the all-important spring season. With the women's team ranked ninth this preseason and the coed team ranked 16th, there is certainly some room for improvement. At the moment, however, Big Green sailors are just glad to be training and competing again.

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