Bulls row to three second-place finishes
Rainy weather could not slow the rowing team on Sunday as the squad started its season off strong against formidable competition.
The Bulls finished in second-place after a day of races at the Indiana Invitational against Indiana, Eastern Michigan, Notre Dame and Purdue.
"It was our first race of the year and we had a lot of second-place finishes in five-team fields," said head coach Rudy Wieler. "It was a good start to the season, but we could get faster in all of these races."
Buffalo earned a first-place victory in the Second Varsity Four race with a time of 8:34.5, finishing ahead of Notre Dame by seven seconds. The boat, made up of senior coxswain Britt Marshall, junior Megan Bayley, sophomore Dakota Smith, as well as freshmen Sarah Gallagher and Francisca Strange, finished 16 seconds ahead of third-place Purdue and 32 seconds ahead of Indiana.
The Bulls also earned three second-place finishes on the day.
The Second Varsity Eight Boat, led by sophomore coxswain Kate Evely, finished with a time of 7:21.4, just seven-tenths of a second behind the first-place Fighting Irish. Alongside Evely were seniors Kate Garofalo, Francisca Nwoke, Sam Masucci, Kelsey Tretter, juniors Sasha Bailey and Lindsay DiCosimo, and sophomores Alexandra Condon and Jacklyn Postulka.
The Varsity Four Boat earned a second-place finish after finishing with a time of 8:22.6, 16 seconds behind a superior Notre Dame team. Indiana, Purdue, and Eastern Michigan rounded out the five-team race respectively.
The Novice Four Boat recorded the final second-place finish of the day for Buffalo. Once again, the Bulls came up short against Notre Dame, clocking a time of 9:07.9. The boat, made up of senior Kolina Dacko, Suvita Visqanathan and freshmen rowers Megan Klyczek, Ariana Blake, Samantha Shojaie, finished seven seconds behind Notre Dame's B boat. The Bulls did, however, defeat the Fighting Irish's top boat that finished third.
In a tight race, the Varsity Eight Boat finished fourth with a time of 7:16.0. The Bulls finished behind Notre Dame, Indiana and Purdue, but were within 10 seconds of all three teams.
The Novice Eight boat finished in third-place with a time of 8:07.2. The Bulls were only two seconds behind Indiana, who came in second-place.
Wieler knows that there's room for improvement.
"I feel that the Varsity Eight Boat can, and will, do better in races down the road," Wieler said. "They are capable of much more. The whole team can improve and one thing we're going to work on is maintaining our speed for the whole race."
The Bulls will be back in the water for a meet at Cornell where they will compete against Gonzaga and Syracuse, in addition to No. 10 nationally-ranked Michigan State and the nation's top ranked team, Yale. The meet will mark the first time that Buffalo will ever race against a top-ranked crew.
"This will be the toughest racing that we have ever had at Buffalo," Wieler said. "We are looking for one thing: to be competitive."
Races are set to begin at 3 p.m. on Friday in Ithaca.