March 31, 2015
Duquesne's women's varsity eight took part in the 42nd annual San Diego Crew Classic on Mission Bay over the weekend. The line-up of coxswain Faith Caldiero, stroke Courtney Purslow, Alexandra Watts, Lauren Hughes, Hannah Mazur, Julia Borsari, Emily Herzig, Gretchen Swabe, and Serena Benages raced in their heat early Saturday morning against boats from Old Dominion, Duke, St. Mary's, and Purdue.
In a very tight race for the third place spot Duquesne came out on top (7:02.30) just ahead of ODU (7:02.68) and Purdue (7:03.36) advancing to the Petite Final along with ODU. Duke finished first (6:54.46) followed by St. Mary's (6:57.62). Both of those crews advanced to the Grand Final.
In the Petite Final later Sunday morning the Dukes went up against Old Dominion University, Loyola Marymount University, Southern Methodist University, University of Portland, and San Diego State University. In what was another very tight race the Dukes battled from start to finish and earned a second place finish. Loyola Marymount finished first in 7:13.27 with Duquesne in second (7:16.87), Portland third (7:17.02), and ODU fourth (7:17.88). Southern Methodist finished fifth (7:21.13) with SDSU crossing in sixth (7:28.75).
Head Coach Joe Setting had the following to say regarding the weekend of competition. "The San Diego Crew Classic offered a unique opportunity to face-off against teams we never race. Getting a chance to compete with new teams outside of your usual racing circuit can be an invaluable tool to take the team to a higher competitive level. This was our programs first ever appearance at the SDCC and our athletes that represented our team did so remarkably well. I was pleased with the overall effort on both days and was excited that our team made such a positive first impression at this top notch regatta. We have plenty of room for growth and improvement ahead of our next regatta and I look forward to the practice days ahead."
The Dukes now set their sights on the Knecht Cup Regatta in Princeton, NJ Saturday, April 11-12.