Princeton Lightweight Crews Take Silver at IRAs While Tiger Heavyweight Program Shows Depth
LIGHT ENTERTAINMENT: The Princeton University men’s lightweight varsity eight displays its form in a recent race. Last Sunday, Princeton’s top boat took second in a thrilling grand final at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) national championship regatta in Sacramento, Calif. Turning the race into a nail-biter, the Tigers made a late surge and lost by just .4 seconds to champion Cornell as they earned silver at the IRAs for a second straight year. Princeton’s back-to-back medals are the first time the program has done that since 2009-10 when the Tigers won the varsity eight race both years. (Photo provided courtesy of Princeton’s Office of Athletic Communications)
By Bill Alden
In mid-May, the Princeton University men’s lightweight varsity eight had a rough day at the Eastern Sprints, fading to fourth place in the grand final.
Last Sunday, Princeton’s top boat put that disappointment behind it, taking second in the grand final at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) national championship regatta on Lake Natoma in Sacramento, Calif.
This time, the Tigers surged to the finish, pushing past four boats as they nearly caught champion Cornell, finishing just .4 seconds behind the Big Red. Princeton clocked a time of 5:44.849 with Cornell just ahead in 5:44.426.
It marked the second straight silver medal at the IRA for the top boat and the first time Princeton had earned back-to-back medals at the competition since 2009-10 when the Tigers won the varsity eight race both years.
The Princeton women’s lightweight eight matched their male counterparts, taking second in the grand final at the IRA.
The Tigers gave perennial champion Stanford a battle, posting a time of 6:37.33 with the Cardinals coming in at 6:32.83. It was Princeton’s first silver medal in the varsity eight at the competition since 2011 while Stanford earned its fifth straight title.
While the Tiger men’s heavyweight program didn’t pick up any medals in the eights at the IRA, it showed its depth and balance, advancing to three grand finals.
The varsity eight and the second varsity eight each placed sixth with the third varsity eight coming in fourth.
Princeton did pick up one medal at the competition as the varsity four placed third in its grand final to earn bronze.
Overall, the Tigers placed fifth in the Ten Eyck Team Trophy standings for a second straight season, scoring 162 points.