During his first season at Princeton, men's lightweight crew coach Marty Crotty entered the postseason on the heel of a tight loss to one of the Tigers' most historic rivals; his squad left the postseason with two gold medals. He now will hope history repeats itself, as Princeton ended the 2011 regular season with a series of narrow losses during the Goldthwait and Vogel Cup Regatta on the Charles River.
Undefeated Harvard won its 42 Goldthwait Cup and will be the top seed for the 2011 EARC Championships after edging Princeton by one second in the varsity eight final. While Yale held a slim lead throughout much of the first half of the race, it was the Crimson that built its edge during the third 500 meters; from that point, Harvard spent the final 500 holding off a hard Tiger charge. Harvard got the job done and clinched the win in 6:03.7, while Princeton took second in 6:04.7. Yale placed third in 6:08.5.
It is the second consecutive Goldthwait Cup for Harvard, which also ended Princeton's 2010 bid for a perfect regular season with a win by .7 of a second. Princeton bounced back twice over the next month to win the Eastern and Ivy League title by 2.3 seconds and the IRA national championship by just under one second.
"It was a pretty brutal day," Crotty said afterwards. "I don't know if I've actually experienced a regatta when the top three races were so hotly contested. It really sets the stage for two weeks for now at the Eastern Sprints."
Harvard also got the second varsity eight in 6:12.2, less than two seconds faster than the previously unbeaten Tiger 2V. The Princeton novice eight was looking to knock off Yale, which entered the weekend as the top-seeded 1F in the lightweight field, and the Tigers held the lead through the vast majority of the race. Unfortunately, that majority did not include the end, as Yale made up an eight-seat deficit and edged Princeton in the final strokes to win by .4 of a second (6:14.7 - 6:15.1).
The Princeton 3V and 4V both fell in their respective races; the Vogel Cup, given to the overall point champion in the regatta, went to Harvard.
Princeton will now turn its focus to the EARC Championships, held May 15 in Worcester, Mass., where it will look to unseat the top-seeded Harvard Crimson once again and win a third straight Ivy League title.
2nd Varsity Eight
3rd Varsity Eight
4V and 2F Eight
Yale 2V/2F 6:38.2
Princeton 4V 6:47.7
Harvard 2F 6:51.4
1st varsity: cox-Mike Perl, stroke-Robin Prendes, 7-Steve Cutler, 6-Gianthomas Volpe, 5-Christian Klein, 4-Hugh Kohl, 3-Nick Bax, 2-Tyler Nase, bow-Nick Donald
2nd Varsity: cox-Erin Rosenbaum, stroke-Connor Edel, 7-Gordon Eccles, 6-Alex Rubert, 5-Barrett Lachance, 4-Taylor Freeman, 3-Dan Nickel, 2-John Votta, bow-Derek Porter
3rd Varsity: cox-Alex Manfull, stroke-Erik Savage, 7-Kevin Cox, 6-Carter Greenbaum, 5-Thomas Owlett, 4-Jim McGlone, 3-Jacques Singer, 2-Zach Romanow, bow-Nathan Swaney
1st Frosh: cox-Anna Nilles, stroke-Paul Shea, 7-Owen Gaffney, 6-Nader Al-Naji, 5-Scottie Tinsman, 4-Aaron Ladd, 3-Alec Buckenheimer, 2-James Kwan, bow-Greg Kazarian
4th Varsity: cox-Jim Li, stroke-Spencer Stroebel, 7-Tim Parsons, 6-Ken Kaneko, 5-Peter Runfola, 4-Michael Hanley, 3-David Shuster, 2-Thomas Maltbaek, bow-Nate Jaffe