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Irish crowned Big East champions

Christine Armstrong | Monday, April 26, 2004

For the first time in the rowing program’s short history, No. 17 Notre Dame was crowned Big East champs Sunday after winning four out of five races on Lake Quinsigamond in Worcester, Mass. The Irish beat the three-time defending champions Syracuse by an astonishing 34 points. Notre Dame’s coach, Martin Stone, was also named Big East Coach of the Year.

Notre Dame’s outstanding times garnered the Irish 116 team points. Miami followed the Irish with 92 and the three-time defending champion Orangewomen finished third with 82. Rutgers, Georgetown, Boston College, Connecticut, Villanova and West Virginia rounded out the rest of the Big East group.

The varsity eight boat won in in 6:54.89, topping the Orangewomen’s 7:00.43. Miami finished in 7:01.95, followed by Boston College in 7:04.13, Rutgers in 7:04.25 and Villanova in 7:04.29.

In the second varsity eight race, the Irish crossed the finish line in 7:09.17 to win the Grand Final, more than four seconds ahead of the Hoyas. Miami had a third place finish in 7:13.37, followed by Syracuse in 7:13.51, Rutgers in 7:19.23 and Boston College in 7:33.27.

But the Irish weren’t done yet. The next Irish victory when their varsity four boat triumphed in the Grand Final race. With a 7:36.66 finish, the Irish easily beat the Hurricanes by more than nine seconds. They were followed by Syracuse, Rutgers, Connecticut and Georgetown.

Finally, the Irish continued their dominance in the varsity four races, taking first and fourth places in the Grand Final race. Notre Dame’s A crew won the race in 7:35.74, ahead of the Orangewomen’s 7:56.41 effort. Georgetown took third place in 7:56.76. Notre Dame’s B boat finished fourth in 8:00.29. Rutgers and Boston College followed.