Fueled by the addition of Olivia Brokaw ’18 and Molly Katarincic ’18 to the first boat, Andover Girls Crew’s G1 crossed the finish line five seconds ahead of Hingham High and eight seconds ahead of Boston Latin. Andover found success across the board, with all three of its varsity boats beating both Hingham and Boston Latin.
The three races were close, however, with Andover’s G2 finishing with a four-second lead and G3 crossing the finish line with a mere 1.3-second lead.
In the practices leading up to Saturday’s race, each of Andover’s boats made adjustments to the lineup in order to fully prepare Andover for the race.
Evelyn Mesler ’17 said, “The change in lineups definitely challenged all the girls to adjust and really focus on the girl in front of them, because they might be following a girl whose stroke is really different from whoever they were following before.”
Sofie Brown ’18 said, “Changes in boat lineups always make a big difference because different people bring different things to the boat, which gives the race a different feel.”
Overall, the new lineups proved to be successful and pushed Andover to its second victory of the season this past Saturday.
Co-Captain Vienna Kuhn ’16 said, “The changes in boat lineups strengthened the connection and speed of the boat.”
At about halfway through the season, Andover has found success by adjusting to the strengths of each rower and being more generally connected within its boats.
“The biggest difference is that we’ve finally found our rhythm,” said Kuhn. “We have a lot of incredibly strong, tall girls in the boat and so we are adjusting our race speed to maximize their power.”
Mesler said, “Since the beginning of the season, our boat has definitely improved our timing and we have begun to row as a unit, instead of eight individual girls.”
Andover focused on small, individual aspects of the race in practice, and these parts fused together during the race.
Brown said, “We’ve been building up endurance with a lot of three-minute pieces at race pace in practices which are great because they are long enough to push you and simulate a race but short enough to be repeatable and sustainable over a long time. Getting to the line after completing a lot of hard practices really improves the confidence of the team.”
“We’ve also gradually been working on different sections of the race and refining the race plan which has helped us a lot,” continued Brown.
Kuhn said, “We’re also just improving our race on the whole – we will continue to focus on the moves we take in the middle of the race, and will likely begin to focus on the sprint as well.”
Looking ahead, Andover hopes to continue to come together as a team and stay focused throughout the race.
Mesler said, “For our next races we hope to be able to power through the middle of the drive, bend the oars together, and work on clean, synchronous finishes.”
“We will work on keeping our heads in the boats and staying focused even when another crew is right up next to us, and walking it through in the middle 500 and the sprint,” said Brown.
Andover will race St. Paul’s away next Saturday in its only away race before the New England Interscholastic Rowing Association Championships.