St. Mary’s Wins Second ICSA/Gill Coed Dinghy NAs Title

Harvard, Hawaii place second and third

The St. Mary’s college of Maryland Seahawks won the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association/Gill North American Championships with a 203-point total. The Harvard University Crimson came in second with 210 points and the University of Hawaii Rainbows placed third with 219 points. The win was the Seahawks second Coed North American title in school history.

It was a battle hard fought; the third and final day of racing saw numerous lead changes among the top three teams. The Seahawks entered the third day two points behind the Crimson. The ’Bows were just two points behind the Seahawks. In the final race, what seemed like a potential disaster struck Harvard and St. Mary’s when both their B division boats were called back to the line after premature starts. The Seahawks B division team of senior Brent Jansen and junior Galen Largay edged out enough boats to finish seventh in the race and clinch the title.

The Seahawks had finished Day 1 in eighth place overall. At the end of the event, junior Danny Pletsch and sophomore Jen Vandemoer finished second in A division with 112 points, with junior Dave Perkowski stepping in to crew for Pletsch for two races on Day 1. Despite their sticky situation in the final race, Jansen and Largay ultimately topped B division with a final score of 95 points. In an interview with Derek Webster, Seahawks coach Adam Werblow said, "Brent and Galen have been comfortable in breeze all year long and we got enough of it to win four races. Danny and Jen kept plugging, and even when they got the wrong shifts, they’d battle back to top-ten finishes."

After winning the ICSA Team Race North Americans last Tuesday, the Harvard University Crimson turned in another impressive performance this week, especially on the final day of the ICSA/Gill Coed Dinghy NAs. In an interview with Webster, Crimson coach Mike O’Connor said, "I couldn’t be prouder of how we sailed all year. We came close and I have no regrets." Returning All-Americans senior Sean Doyle and junior Michelle Yu finished third in A division with 113 points. In B division, returning All-American Clay Bischoff and Lema Kikuchi placed second with 97 points. Doyle, Bischoff and Yu earned All-America honors again. Doyle was named ICSA College Sailor of the Year. The Crimson team was named the ICSA Team of the Year, and were awarded the Fowle Trophy at the All-America Banquet on Saturday night after the final day of racing.

The University of Hawaii Rainbows finished third overall, a finish that ties for their best coed finish in school history, having also placed third in 1993. In an interview with Webster, Rainbows coach Andy Johnson said, "Our goal was to be top 5 in all three championships and we succeeded. I’m extremely proud of these guys." Freshman Bryan Lake and sophomore Jennifer Warnock topped A division with just 80 points, with a whopping 32 points ahead of Pletsch and Vandemoer. In B division, senior Molly O’Bryan and junior Sarah Hitchcock placed ninth with 139 points. They sailed all the races except one set, when freshman Joey Pasquali and junior crew Lindsay Peters stepped in.

Similarly to nearly every preceding day of the three events, conditions involved puffy, shifty northeast tradewinds, ranging from five to 15 knots. Each division completed four races for 18 total races per division. Air and water temperatures never faltered, remaining at 80 degrees for the duration of the event. The regatta was held at the Honolulu Community College Marine Education and Training Center.

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