The Observer is a student-run, daily print & online newspaper serving Notre Dame, Saint Mary's & Holy Cross. Learn about us.



Irish compete at OSU Regatta, prep for Big 10 Invite

| Wednesday, April 13, 2022

The Notre Dame rowing squad took on some tough conditions at the Ohio State (OSU) regatta this past weekend. The Irish raced the Buckeyes in a dual race in the morning before adding the Oklahoma Sooners into the fold, racing both squads in the afternoon.

“Tough conditions. Cold, rainy, hail,” Irish head coach Martin Stone said. “The 2V race against Ohio State and Oklahoma, the hail was coming down so hard, we couldn’t see in the launch. One thing that stood out was how positive we were given the trying conditions.”

Notre Dame faced a tall task in the morning against a very strong Buckeyes’ squad. Ohio State swept the morning races, and each boat won by at least 10 seconds. Four of the six races ended with Ohio State winning by more than 20 seconds.

“We didn’t get down on ourselves after the morning session. Ohio State is very, very good,” Stone said. “To come back and race competitively against Oklahoma felt pretty good.”

Indeed, the Irish rallied against the Sooners in the afternoon. The Buckeyes continued to dominate, winning all six afternoon races. However, the Irish beat Oklahoma in three of the five races the Sooners rowed in. After a rocky start and third-place finish in the third Varsity Eight, Notre Dame looked much improved in the third Varsity Four. After rowing the race in 8:04 in the morning, the Irish cut nine seconds off their time. They came in just two seconds behind Ohio State and finished second, 9.6 seconds ahead of the Buckeyes’ second boat.

“We definitely saw improvement from the morning to the afternoon in most of the boats,” Stone noted.

Both other Varsity Four boats finished second in their races as well, with the second Varsity Four also cutting off 9.5 seconds from their morning time. While they were impressive, the weekend’s best performance came from the second varsity eight squad, powered by some mid-day lineup changes.

“I think we were trying to look for a little bit of a better flow in the boats,” Stone explained. “We have the power and the fitness. We definitely got it out of the second Varsity (Eight).”

After finishing in 7:00.7 in the morning, the Irish mixed up the lineup a little bit. Junior Isabelle Keren and sophomore Avery Ericksen moved from the 1V8 boat to the 2V8. Despite the hail and rain significantly worsening the conditions, the Irish improved their time. While the Ohio State squad’s time increased by seven seconds, Notre Dame improved to 6:57.2. They didn’t quite catch the Buckeyes, but it was good for a second-place finish, 18 seconds clear of the Sooners.

Irish prep for Big Ten Invite

Fresh off the competitive weekend, the Irish jump back into the fray in just a few days. They race three times this weekend in the Big Ten Invitational in Sarasota, Florida. For Notre Dame, it represents three of their final four races in the regular season. They’ll race twice Friday and once Saturday, all against three other teams. Friday morning, the Irish face Iowa, Duke and Minnesota. Duke represents one of just three ACC opponents the Irish see during the regular season. A top-15 team, Duke is buoyed by their Varsity Eight, which has garnered ACC Crew of the Week honors in two of the past four weeks.

Stone spoke about the unknowns of in-conference opponents, just about a month out from the ACC Championships.

“It’s a little bit of an unknown. There are limited weekends to race, so most ACC coaches are trying to use these weekends to race out of conference,” he said.

Later on Friday, the Irish face their stiffest competition of the weekend. They’ll take on Michigan, Brown and Indiana.

“Michigan is a top five or six team, Brown is pretty close to that,” Stone said. “We’re going out and getting an opportunity to race fast crews and get a chance to see where we are.”

The Irish finish by facing Dartmouth, Iowa and Michigan State on Saturday.

“We look at it as we have four races. Three this weekend, three opportunities to go down the race course,” Stone noted. “We have a pretty good idea of what our strength and weaknesses are and what we need to fine-tune for the ACC Championships.”

Tags: ,

About Aidan Thomas

A junior marketing and ACMS major at Notre Dame, I've countered the success I've enjoyed as a New England sports fan with the painful existence of a Notre Dame football fan.

Contact Aidan