On Saturday, Andover Girls Crew raced against Greater Lawrence and Essex in a scrimmage. Andover’s second boat placed first overall, beating out boat one which finished a close second. In the first competitive event of the season, the girls worked as a team and exceeded expectations even in very poor weather conditions during the race. “The weather was awful. The water was extremely choppy, and it was freezing cold,” said Victoria Everett ’14, a new rower on the G1 boat. “Although we did not do as well as we wanted, we did as well as we could for that day,” said Qiqi Ren ’15. “The conditions were un-ideal; it was really windy, and the water was rough, so we could not get our timing and balance right. Our technique was really messy because the waves made it difficult to focus.” Weather conditions were the least of the team’s worries, however, because last minute changes forced each boat to re-strategize right before starting the race. “The coaches had to shorten the course last-minute to avoid the roughest patches,” added Ren. “We had to improvise our race plan on the spot and make changes based on the conditions. We also didn’t get to warm-up enough because we got on the water much later than planned and could not row in parts of the river.” Despite the poor weather and the loss for the G1 Boat, the girls remain excited and upbeat about the rest of the season. “We still have a lot to work on, but this race proved to us that we have the potential to have a fantastic season,” said Co-Captain Emily Carrolo ’13. “I am especially proud of how we acted as a team. We were there cheering for each other when the boats launched and as the races went by. I am really excited to see how the rest of the season turns out.” “Coach Bouscaren continues to prepare us and keep us upbeat, fostering a positive attitude,” said Colby Fagan ’14, a rower on G1. “The first regatta of the season is always a learning tool; our focus is on the competition we will see at Kent this Saturday.” The team has been working hard during practice, pushing to reach its goal of placing higher than last season, and this showed in the first competition of the season. “We did well considering the circumstances, and we improved from last year’s race,” said Ren. “For this early in the season, we’re off to a good start. We know what we need to work on, and this can be a motivation for us to work even harder than we were.” “It was a very quick start, and a good effort was put forth,” said Victoria. “Second place is an okay placing for our first scrimmage, and we’re looking forward to the rest of the season.” Girls Crew will look to take first place in its first regatta of the regular season against Kent on Saturday.