JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville University women's rowing wrapped up the fall slate at the Head of the Hooch regatta in Chattanooga, Tenn. on Saturday with its best performance in years at the event.
"I thought the team did an outstanding job as a from top to bottom," said Head Coach Mike Lane.
The top finisher for JU was the Championship 8+ A boat, which finished 10th with a time of 16:58.73. This was the best finish on record and the fastest time since 2009. The A boat was also the best finisher in the Championship 4+, posting a time of 18:35.36, good enough for 12th. The B boat raced at 17:32.09 in the Champ 8+, finishing 15th. This was the best finish for the second varsity since resuming competition at the Hooch in 2011.
"Finishing in the top-10 was a goal at the beginning of the fall and I could not be more proud of our team for accomplishing this," said Lane. "Our 2v finishing 15th was also huge, and shows that our goal of building a bigger stronger team is taking shape."
The is the final fall competition for JU, which started October with a scrimmage against UCF on the St. Johns River, went to Cambridge, Mass. for the Head of the Charles and scrimmaged in DeLand, Fla. last weekend as a tuneup for this event, known as "The Last Great Fall Regatta" which features the largest single day competition of any event in the country.
"When you show up to a regatta with thousands of athletes, it is a bit overwhelming, but also very exciting," said Lane. "I was really glad our novice got the opportunity to experience it."
After a fall of unique challenges, including missing two weeks of practice time and suffering damage at the Negaard Rowing Center due to Hurricane Irma, JU shift the focus to getting ready for the spring and the defense of its MAAC Championship.
"Our kids never used that [hurricane] as an excuse and in turn put together a historic performance at the Head of the Hooch," said Lane. "Also notable is the focus our kids had from day one. They have really bought into what we are doing and I can't wait to see what will come this spring."
Full results and times below: