SARASOTA, Fla. – The shelves of the Negaard Rowing Center are about to get a little more stocked because for the eighth consecutive year the Jacksonville University men’s rowing program has won the Florida Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships. With their title on the line against Florida Tech, Florida State, Rollins, Tampa, Stetson and Embry-Riddle, the men defended well with five strong showings on the day.
"We had our challenges with two guys from the varsity 8 becoming ill before their race, but the team handled the adversity well, and were able to perform well enough to win the points trophy." said Head Coach Montia Rice. "The strength of our team from top to bottom was a major contributor to our team win, and our freshmen especially contributed by winning their 10th consecutive freshmen eight title for JU."
The Freshmen/Novice Eight and Four crews pushed past all of their competitors en route to etching the program’s only first-place finishes of the day. The F8 crew posted the fastest time in its heat at 6:21.5 and as the best of eight other boats, JU’s F4 boat rowed past runner-up Georgia Tech by 14 seconds with a time of 7:00.5.
Launching the 8:30 a.m. regatta, the first race of the day captured the Varsity Eight crew placing fourth with a time of 6:10.5. Florida Tech won the heat by a margin of 15 seconds over the second-place Georgia Tech boat.
In the fourth event of the Nathan Benderson Park regatta, FIT again bested its competitors with the JU’s Junior Varsity Eight crew placing second at 6:11.4.
Two Dolphin boats competed in the men’s pair race and JU’s B boat recorded a third-place effort with a time of 7:30.9. Rollins earned the victory at 7:25.1 and was followed by Stetson, JU’s B boat, Tampa and Georgia Tech. Jacksonville’s A crew rounded out the pack at 8:10.8.
Saturday’s scoring race was tight but the Dolphin’s 76 total points was enough to hold the opposition at bay. For the second year, the rankings saw JU and Rollins at the top, and by a narrow margin, Jacksonville edged the second-place Rollins by 11 points.
The women’s program also seized a point trophy and the two combined for 177.5 points to crown JU’s seventh overall point title in the last eight years.
Jacksonville will have a moment to relish in their FIRA Championship before preparing to do it all over again in the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships on April 18.
MEN'S V8 LINEUP: Alex Tate (COX), Brian Cosmillo, Luke Myhree, Scott Del Vecchio, Scott Waitley, Scott Marx, Shane Kennedy, Chase Rowe, Sean Carney
MEN'S JV8 LINEUP: Steven McDonald, Andrew Stebbins, Shane Barnett, Victor Garguan, Erik Fournier, Billy Macomber, Nathan Esterline, Andrew Bechtold, Travis Pulliam
MEN'S PAIR A:Andrew Bechtold & Sean Carney
MEN'S PAIR B: Troy Troupe & Steven Marra
MEN'S FRESHMEN/NOVICE 8: Marissa Chodorow (COX), Luke Myhree, Travis Pulliam, Scott Marx, Shane Barnett, Victor Garguan, Frank Maurice, Will Vanneck, Nico MacKay
MEN'S JV 4: Steven McDonald (COX), Andrew Stebbins, Erik Fournier, Billy Macomber, Nathan Esterline
MEN'S FRESHMEN/NOVICE 4: Steven McDonald (COX), Luke Myhree, Shane Barnett, Victor Garguan, Travis Pulliam
MEN'S VARSITY 4 B: Marissa Chodorow (COX), Sean Carney, Scott Marx, S. Kennedy, Troy Troupe