Last Saturday, Andover Crew began the season against perennial league powerhouse Kent School. “The race was not our best,” said Charlie Walters ’10 from B1 as his boat lost by about a length and a half. “Even though it was our first time on the water and they rowed a rigorous schedule during spring break, it was slightly disappointing,” he said. Kent had the opportunity to train over spring break, and had over three weeks more training time on the water than any over team. The second boys varsity boat rowed well after getting behind early. Coach Peter Washburn said, “We showed a lot of composure and gutsiness and gradually worked our way through the Kent boat to win by a deck length.” On the girl’s side, Kristen Faulkner ’11 from G1 called her race, “incredible.” Even though Kent took an early lead, Andover fought back in the middle 500 meters of the race, winning by a mere inch. “Beating Kent is a great sign that our boat is going to be very fast this year,” she said. Kent’s second boat rowed at a better pace than its own first boat, beating Andover’s G2 by over seven seconds. Both the girls third and fourth boats struggled against the Kent opposition, losing both races by ten and fifteen seconds, respectively. B3 lost by over fourteen seconds after one of Andover’s rowers caught a crab. B4, however, was able to defeat Kent, winning the race by six seconds. At this same time last year, Andover’s B1 boat lost to Kent by a similar margin. However, the boat recovered from the loss by beating Kent at Interschols in May. “We will beat Kent at Interschols,” said Walters. He also believes that this group of boys is ready to do the hard work needed to bring home the hardware later in the year. Faulkner was also encouraged by the races as Andover had not trained as much as Kent’s squad. “We anticipated that their start would be much better than ours, as they have been practicing more than us,” she said. Coach Washburn said that he is optimistic about the rest of season as everyone worked hard on Saturday. “We are a team and there are no superstars or individuals who win the race for us,” he said. He also said that he believes that the team learned a great deal from the races. Andover plans to approach things differently within the boat while working hard every day to improve times. Next weekend, the girls team faces off against its main rival and defending Interschols champion, Exeter at the PA/PEA Invitational. “I’m really looking forward to seeing how we do against Exeter this weekend,” sad Coach Kathryn Green. The boys heads to a quad regatta over the weekend, facing St. John’s Prep, Simsbury and Exeter at Simsbury.