Bruno’s crew programs both enjoyed victories over Ivy League opponents this weekend as the men swept No. 15 Dartmouth at home and the women toppled No. 16 Cornell and No. 18 Columbia in Ithaca, N.Y.
Brown, the No. 4 men’s team, had an impressive weekend on its home course on the Seekonk River, sweeping Dartmouth in all four races.
The Varsity Eight earned its first victory April 14 against No. 9 Northeastern, and with the Ivy and NCAA Championships just around the corner, Head Coach Paul Cooke decided to ramp up the squad’s training last week.
“We recognize that the championships are just three weeks away,” Cooke said. “Now we have to do the things we need to do to get ready.”
The extra training paid off over the weekend as the Bears’ Varsity Eight came away with a decisive victory. Though Dartmouth jumped out to a quick lead, Bruno finished an astounding 17 seconds ahead of the Big Green with a time of 5:58.1.
“Dartmouth came out aggressively in the varsity race, and some of the guys were kind of shocked,” said captain Alex Fleming ’12. “But after a while, Dartmouth kind of paid for going out so fast. By the thousand (meter mark) we had made up the difference, and in the second half we had built a significant lead.”
Both Bruno’s Second and Third Varsity Eight boats came in ahead of Dartmouth’s Second Varsity Eight, clinching 19- and 13-second victories, respectively. The Bears’ Freshman Eight and Varsity Four also finished ahead of their Big Green counterparts.
Earning back-to-back victories has built momentum that will help carry the team into the championships, Cooke said.
“We came into the season knowing that there were a lot of things that this team could accomplish, and I think they’re in a position to do that,” Cooke said. “I’m very impressed with the way they are coming together as a group and exceeding the expectations they set for themselves.”
The Bears will hit the road and travel to Lake Carnegie in Princeton to face the Tigers this weekend.
With the championships just a few short weeks away, the team is excited for the opportunity to show what they are capable of.
“I think we’re up there with the top boats in the country,” Fleming said. “I expect it to be a good race to the metal stand.”
Meanwhile, the No. 10 women’s team clinched the Dunn Bowl with a victory over Columbia and Cornell in the Varsity Eight. The Bears finished in 6:58.6, two seconds ahead of Cornell and more than 10 seconds faster than Columbia. Bruno also earned a victory in the Second Varsity Eight with a time of 7:07.6, defeating the Lions and the Big Red by 2.2 and 3.4 seconds, respectively.
Despite a second-place finish in the Varsity Four race, the Bears were able to edge out Cornell in the Third Varsity Eight, finishing with a time of 7:27.0.
The women host their final home meet of the season Saturday against No. 15 Yale.