March 30, 2003
Providence, RI - The Brown oarsmen started their season auspiciously on the rainy Seekonk River Sunday, Mar. 30, sweeping three races from the Syracuse Orangemen. Brown won the varsity race 5:49.6-5.55. The Bears won the second varsity and freshman races by five lengths or more.
The Brown varsity, stroked by sophomore Terence Kookyer (Far Hills, NJ), opened at 41 strokes a minute and took a three-seat lead in the first 20 strokes. The Bears stretched their lead to eight seats at the 1000-meter mark, then took a power twenty, which they call "the Bruno Twenty,'' increasing their lead to a length of open water.
The Orangemen, who had lost to Boston University on the Charles River in Cambridge, MA the day before, made up a little ground over the last 500 meters, rowing as high as 40 strokes a minute. However Brown, taking its stroke up to 36 at the finish, maintained a comfortable lead.
"Our varsity fought hard,'' said Syracuse's Head Coach Dave Reischman. "They made a last-ditch effort , but Brown didn't have much reason to take the stroke up.''
Kookyer was one of three sophomores in the varsity lineup Brown Head Coach Paul Cooke put together last Monday. He had a full week of double sessions during spring break to work with it.
The rest of the lineup included senior Sara Dowd (Providence, RI) at coxswain; junior Alejandro Mendoza (Miami, FL) at seven; sophomore Alex Hurtado (Seattle, WA) at six; senior Mark Peterson (Washington, DC) at five; senior Dave Enemark (Palo Alto, CA) at four; sophomore Bill Murray (Bolyston, MA) at three; senior co-captain Colin Cassady (Cincinnati, OH) at two; and junior Keith Howard (Portland, OR) at one.
"I wanted them to row long and low, be aggressive and move the boat at 33 strokes per minute," said Cooke. "I thought they did a good job but they're not ready for full speed.'' By the time of the Eastern Sprints six weeks from now Cooke says the Bears will need to sustain a beat of 36 strokes a minute to be contenders.
Cooke's second varsity opened at 43 strokes a minute, had a length lead after 20 strokes and continued pouring it on, rowing two strokes higher than the varsity had done all the way down the course. "I didn't whip them up. They did that themselves,'' said Cooke.
The second varsity matched the varsity's time, but as Cooke pointed out, the tide had turned and the second varsity had more help from the current. Brown's Matt Carlson's freshmen crew may be one of the best in the east juding from their high finish at the Head of the Charles last fall. The frosh were never pressed Sunday by an undermanned Syracuse. The team will face much stronger competition next Saturday at Boston University and in succeeding weeks however.
Varsity Eights: Brown, 5:49.6; Syracuse, 5:55
Second Varsity: Brown, 5:49.6; Syracuse, 6:06
Freshmen: Brown, 5:54.3; Syracuse, 6:18
Story courtesy of Dave Philips