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Photo Credit: Benji Bear Photography

MACRA Championships

May 1, 2016

Bethel, OH  – On Saturday, April 30, the University of Michigan Men's Rowing Team travelled to Harsha Lake in Bethel, Ohio to race at the MACRA Championships. The regatta marked the beginning of championship racing for the squad, who swept the heavyweight varsity events.

Despite initial forecasts calling for thunderstorms, conditions were excellent for the heats of the Varsity 4 event, which opened racing on Sunday. Both of Michigan’s entries won their respective heats easily, with the first entry finishing in 6:51.0, 6.2 seconds over MSOE, and the second entry (comprised of oarsmen from the Second Varsity 8) finishing in 6:50.6, seven seconds ahead of Grand Valley. Despite the closeness in times between the two crews in the heats, there proved to be less parity in the final, as the second entry won the Judson Ross Cup by 5.5 seconds over the first entry.

The Varsity 4’s freshman counterparts raced next, with the first entry (comprised of oarsmen from the Freshman 8) winning their heat by a lopsided 17 - second margin. The second entry fell to Ohio State by 5.6 seconds, while still advancing to the final. Racing for the Don Rose Cup in the afternoon final, the first entry took home another open water victory, finishing 5.9 seconds ahead of Ohio State and 16.8 seconds ahead of Michigan’s second entry, who placed fourth.

The only other event large enough to require heats was the Varsity 8. In their heat, UM punched their ticket to the final by finishing 4.9 seconds ahead of Mercyhurst. Their time of 6:05.9 was the second - fastest of both heats, behind Grand Valley’s 6:02.9. However, Grand Valley’s apparent advantage was illusory, as the Wolverines defeated the third - place Lakers by 6.9 seconds in the final, as well as silver medalist Mercyhurst by 5.7 seconds, thus capturing the Ralph Lindamood Cup. The varsity crew, which was unanimously ranked first in last week’s ACRA Coaches Poll, posted a blistering time of 5:45.8.

Two freshman events were undersubscribed, and required only a straight final. In the Second Freshman 8 event, UM won with a tremendous 19.4 - second margin over the Michigan Third Freshman 8, who in turn finished a full 21 seconds ahead of Michigan State’s Second Freshman 8.

Like the Varsity 8, the Freshman 8 was unanimously ranked first in last week’s ACRA Coaches Poll. The crew defended that ranking with an open water victory over Grand Valley, thus winning the Paul Springer Cup.

The varsity squad entered four events that went straight to finals. In the Lightweight 4, Michigan’s newly - formed crew battled with Mercyhurst early before the Lakers pulled away in the second half of the race, finishing 4.7 seconds ahead of the Wolverines. Michigan’s crew featured three of the four oarsmen who won the Lightweight 4 event at the ACRA National Championships last year.

In the Second Varsity 8, Michigan won the Al Belovarac cup by an 8.8 - second margin over UM’s Third Varsity 8, who beat Grand Valley’s Second Varsity 8 by five seconds.

In the pair, Michigan’s second entry pulled off an upset by defeating the team’s first entry by 3.7 seconds and winning the James Wamley Cup. Finally, in the Open Single, UM’s top entry dominated, winning by 17.3 seconds.

Overall, Michigan finished with 51 points, good for second in the overall team points competition and only two points away from first place Grand Valley, despite the Wolverines not entering any women’s events.

The team will return to Ann Arbor and continue training before leaving for the ECAC / NIRC regatta in Worcester, Massachusetts on Friday, May 6.




   1st Varsity 8    2nd Varsity 8    3rd Varsity 8    Varsity 4 A   Varsity 4 B
   C - Demi Shanahan    C - Chelsea Tistle    C - John Houghton    C - John Houghton   C - Esther Yang
   S - Alex Brown    S - Jordan Shore    S - Jordan Sykes    S - Scott Griffith   S - Jordan Shore
   7 - William Burstein    7 - Lake Vitton    7 - Andrew Barber    3 - Ben Getz   3 - Jake Presto
   6 - Damian Rotarov    6 - Ben Sonnega    6 - Steve Sikora    2 - Garrett Klumpar   2 - Ben Sonnega
   5 - Mitchell Tyson    5 - Jake Presto    5 - Sahil Desai    B - Lucien Gerondeau   B - James Garay
   4 - Alika Ziker    4 - Toby Buth    4 - Mike Griffin     
   3 - Ian McGraw    3 - Colin Darnton    3 - Robert MacDonald     
   2 - Ben Rebertus    2 - Phil Faris    2 - Nathan Morningstar     
   B - Grey Braybrooks    B - James Garay    B - Spencer Price     

   Varsity Light 4    Varsity Pair A    Varsity Pair B    Varsity Single A   Varsity Sinlge B
   C - Esther Yang    S - Levi Godin    S - Tyler Simpson    William Denman   Alex Coletta
   S - Jordan Sykes    B - Steve Fegan    B - Lyle Antieau     
   3 - Andrew Barber           
   2 - Steve Sikora           
   B - Sahil Desai