Sports

Ben Dann ’12: Athlete’s notebook

Cruisin’ through Crimson

By
Contributing Sports Columnist
Monday, April 12, 2010

The men’s crew team hosted Harvard Saturday and sent the Crimson back to Cambridge in defeat. Brown won three of five races, and Ben Dann ’12, the No. 2 seat in the JV boat, helped row the Bears to one of their three victories. This is how it went down from his point of view.

Harvard week is finally over! Our team can let out a sigh of relief after a big W this weekend (and Ari can shave off his mullet and dirt ‘stache). Harvard is our biggest competition on the East Coast. Although we get to race them three times, including Eastern Sprints and IRAs, nothing feels as sweet as beating the Tide head to head in a dual race.

We won three out of five races, including the varsity, JV and 3V. In the 3V, Kyle Beatty ’12 and his crew charged out of the stakes guns blazing — and by guns I mean his jacked biceps — adding crucial boat speed to attaining a three-second victory.

The second varsity — or JV — won by just under a boat length thanks to Ari Resnick’s ’12 intimidating mullet courtesy of Brent Mylrea ’11. The varsity claimed the day with a one-second victory, holding off the Crimson’s sprint. The frosh and fourth varsity eights came up slightly short, now having reason to come back stronger against Harvard down the road.

There are a few things I remember about this week worth noting. First, we have a vendetta against Harvard, and we show it with fierce and sporadic shouts of, “IT’S HARVARD WEEK BABY YEEEAAAH.”

Second, the majority of the race is filled with the noise of the coxswain making calls and directing the boat when to make moves, but in the last 500 meters, the crowd takes over, and the only thing I hear is my mom’s cowbell.

Third, the women’s crew pinned up catchphrase posters on everyone’s locker with clever catchphrases, encouraging guys like Greg Silverberg ’12 to “go for the gold!” Or telling Jacques Greenberg ’12 to, “Jack them up Jacques!” However, someone decided to change “up” something a little more inappropriate, and he stared at it for five minutes wondering why anyone wanted him to do that to the opposing team.

However, whatever Jacques was supposed to do, Harvard did not stick around after the race long enough to see what it was. Traditionally, the losing team’s coach physically passes the trophy to the winning team’s coach in a ceremony displaying good sportsmanship. But after the Crimson’s abrupt departure, Harvard and their legendary Head Coach Harry Parker are not what I would call good sports.

Spring racing season flies by faster each day. Every race lasts close to six minutes, and preparation for the races account for thousands of hours training. It’s crazy to think how much time is invested into each stroke of a race. We dream, joke, cry and lose sleep over races. But overall, we are just having fun racing and kickin’ ass.

— Ben Dann

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