The Grand Valley Rowing Team won what they hope is the first of many team points trophy of the spring at the Don Lubber’s Cup Regatta in Grand Rapids on Saturday.
Both the men’s and women’s varsity 8+’s took home second place finishes after racing some tough competition early in the season. The men’s time of 5:45.40 put them just three seconds behind Division I Michigan. Michigan has won the event several years in a row, but the Lakers have continuously narrowed the gap between them and the Wolverines race and their finish this year shows tremendous potential for the rest of the season.
The women’s crew’s sprint in the final meters of the race proved to be just short of overtaking Notre Dame. Nearly bow to stern at the 500 meter mark, Grand Valley gained some distance back, finishing just a second and a half behind the Irish (6:55.4). The Lakers did, however, come in ahead of the University of Rochester whom they had lost to in the fall.
Grand Valley’s lightweight 8+ and Michigan were neck and neck most of the men’s second varsity 8+ race, but the Laker’s took off during the second thousand and didn’t look back, claiming a first place finish. Their time of 6:22.97 put them ahead of crews from U of M, MSU, Notre Dame, and the University of Rochester.
The women’s novice 8+ also made an impressive showing, blowing away all the competition. Their time of 7:15.78 put them over 20 seconds ahead of Notre Dame and the University of Rochester.
In the novice men’s 8+ race, Grand Valley edged out the University of Michigan to claim a second place finish (6:08.69). Notre Dame won the event with a time of 6:08.69.
The men’s third varsity eight and women’s second varsity eights claimed second and third place finishes, respectively, in their events.
The Laker Navy also sent out several fours to represent the team throughout the day. The women’s varsity four held onto their lead to win their event with a time of 7:43.75. On the men’s side, varsity fours in both the “A” and “B” events took home first place finishes. The novice men and novice women’s squads claimed second place finishes in their events.
After the races were finished, awards were given out to winning crews of the day. We were pleased to have former GSVU president Don Lubbers and his wife Nancy join us for the day and present the Men’s and Women’s Varsity 8+ Cups and commemorative medallions. Don also awarded Grand Valley the Arend D. Lubber’s Cup Overall Team Points Trophy. The Lakers also tied with Michigan for men’s points, but after the tiebreaker, the men’s varsity 8+ race, U of M took home the prize. Notre dame won the women’s team points trophy. Also along for the ceremony was Michele Golightly, office manager of Student Life. She presented the trophy in her honor to Grand Valley’s novice women’s 8+ crew.
Following a day of successful racing, the Laker Navy, friends, and family gathered for their annual banquet at the Grand Haven Community Center. Highlights of the evening were guest speaker alumni Dane Gallagher, the honoring of senior rowers, and comedic presentations by hosts President Dan Vainner and Vice President Kyle LeMoine.
The Laker’s will host another regatta next Saturday this time in Spring Lake at the America’s “Other West Coast” Regatta where they will face crews from Marquette University, University of Michigan, Michigan State University, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Northern Michigan University, Northwestern University men, Ohio State University, and University of Cincinnati.