The Drexel University men’s crew team outdid itself again. On top of taking an overall first place finish at the Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta and numerous other first place regatta finishes this season, the men’s team brought home another victory for the Dragons.
The Dragons took 15th place at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association’s National Championships, which took place May 29-31 at Mercer Lake in West Windsor, New Jersey.
IRA Championships were a big goal for the Dragons this season. One of their main focuses this season was to move up from their placing last year, when they finished in 19th place.
The regatta, as indicated by its name, hosts all of the best collegiate rowing programs in the nation, including the University of Washington, Harvard University and fellow University City resident the University of Pennsylvania.
Drexel sent five boats to the championships, and just like last year, every boat that entered the competition fought to a top-20 finish.
The best finish for the team came from the freshman eight boat, which came in sixth at the championships, measuring up very well against some of the best boats in the country. The freshman eight boat was the only Drexel boat that competed in a grand final race. The Dragons came in behind boats from first place overall finisher University of Washington, and a couple of other great programs including Cornell University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with a time of 6:04.01.
The next best Dragon boat, the varsity four boat, took 16th place, while the third varsity eight boat took 17th, the second varsity eight boat took 19th and the first varsity eight boat took 20th.
It wasn’t only the men’s success this weekend that catapulted the Drexel crew team into the headlines as the season came to a close. Seven female rowers were named to the Collegiate Rowing Association Coaches list of National Scholar Athletes June 1. Qualifying athletes had to earn 3.5 cumulative GPAs, be at least sophomore standing and row in at least 75 percent of the team’s events for the season.
The student-athletes that received honors were Abigail Colasacco, Tori King, Amanda Kleuser, Elise Levito, Julie McGlynn, Barbara McKenna and Nupur Parikh.
This is the second year that Kleuser and McGlynn have earned the honor and the third for King, Leviot and McKenna.
The season, overall, was a huge success for the Dragons, marked by the team’s third straight Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta title and other numerous cup wins, such as the Bergen Cup and the Kerr Cup.
The returning members of the team will get back to work for their fall season in late September.