Bears Fall to Princeton and Michigan

March 31, 2003

Princeton handed the Brown women's varsity crew its first loss in dual competition since 1997 Saturday, March 29, winning in strong tailwind conditions on Princeton's Lake Carnegie.

It was a Princeton crew that had handed a Brown women's varsity its last loss in a two-boat race.

Leading all the way after a sprinting start at better than 40 strokes a minute, the Tigers won by half a length over Michigan, with Brown another deck length behind. The race was rowed in a building tail wind.

Princeton also won the second-varsity and varsity fours races. Brown won in first novice eights and second novice fours.

"They (Princeton) got a length on us in the first minute,'' Brown varsity coach John Murphy said. "After that we started to come back. We had our bow up to their four seat with 500 meters to go. But our boat was pulling to port and one of our oars hit the big, red buoy on that side of the course with 500 meters to go. We lost two or three seats and dropped back to third. We started to come back, as did Michigan, but I don't know if anybody was going to catch Princeton. They were rowing a very hard, aggressive race.''

Murphy had to rebuild his varsity after losing the bow four oarswomen to graduation last spring. The stern four returned but Murphy moved two of them into bow four seats.

Princeton, on the other hand, boated a veteran group. "I expected them to be really strong,'' saidMurphy. "They have a group which has been together a long time. They were very good today.''

"We learned some lessons and I feel we can definitely go faster,'' said Murphy. "But I felt everybody did their very best today.''

The times:

Varsity eights: Princeton, 6:18; Michigan, 6:19.65; Brown, 6:20.63.

Second-varsity eights: Princeton, 6:25.2; Brown, 6:29.17; Michigan, 6:31.57.

Varsity fours: Princeton B, 7":21.5; Michigan, 7:23.33; Princeton A, 7:25.64; Brown, 7:28.45.

First novice eights: Brown, 6:31.2; Princeton, 6:52.42; Michigan, 7:22.88.

Second novice fours: Brown, 7:36.9; Princeton, 7:57.6