As good as the Varsity 8 has been for the rowing team this season, they were in the midst of a bit of a drought going into the Kerr Cup in Philadelphia this past weekend. They had not reached a Grand Final since the last time they were in Pennsylvania, at the Murphy Cup back on March 26, where they took gold. The Rams must have been happy to be back in the City of Brotherly Love, this time qualifying for not one, but two Varsity 8 boats for Grand Finals, as well as finals appearances from the Varisty and Novice 4’s.
In the main Varsity 8, the Rams rolled over the competition in Heat two, finishing five seconds ahead of second place, Lehigh, and registering a time of 6:42.09. Washington College, Fairfield and Stetson rounded out the racers. With that, Fordham moved on to the Grand Final, the cream of the crop. They rowed very well, but were just edged out by Temple and finished second with a time of 6:37.63, a second slower than the Owls. The boat was faster, however, than Drexel, A-10 rival St. Joseph’s, Army West Point and Lehigh for a silver finish–the second top three finish in a Grand Final for a Varsity 8 boat this year.
Flirting with a gold finish did not stop there. Fordham’s representative in the second Varsity 8 got themselves a date with the Grand Final as well with a time of 6:53.34. Following that, it was another Grand Final and another top three finish. Completing the course in 6:41.67, the Rams took third place behind Temple and St. Joseph’s and in front of Drexel, Marist and Lehigh. The always consistent Varsity 8 capped off a very successful weekend.
Their women’s Varsity 4 also reached their final with a first place finish in their heat, ahead of Temple, West Point, Loyola, Fairfield and Maryland in 7:38.89. The Rams finished fifth in the Final at 7:43.52, able to get past St. Joseph’s B, but fell behind Drexel, Lafayette, Temple and St. Joseph’s B.
The women got one last finals appearance from their Novice 4, who won their heat, registering a time of 8:21.61, soaring past Rutgers Camden, NY Maritime, St. Mary’s and American. Going on to garner a solid third place finish in 8:13.44 ahead of West Point, NYU and Rutgers Camden, but behind Temple and top finisher Villanova.
Rounding out the participating boats were the second Varsity 4 and the Novice 8, the first of which placed third in their heat, getting past Drexel, but falling to Temple and St. Joseph’s. The Novice 8 finished third behind Temple and Fairfield.
Crew returns to action on Sunday April 24, when they take on Bucknell in the first head-to-head matchup of the spring season. Two weeks later, the team will head to Woodbridge, Virginia for the Atlantic 10 Championships. There, the Rams will compete against their in-conference rivals on the Occoquan River.