WEST WINDSOR, N.J. -- Wellesley College crew earned the bronze in the varsity eight and the silver in the second varsity eight to take third overall at the 2017 NCAA Division III Women's Rowing Championships at Lake Mercer. Bates College earned the team national championship for the second time in three years thanks to their combined point total from the two events.
Wellesley finishes in the top-three for the third time in the last three years and finishes third overall for the fourth time under the direction of Head Coach Tessa Spillane. Wellesley has been in the top-five in the nation for eight consecutive years at the NCAA Championships.
"I think that this season was a constant improvement, every race got better and better" said senior Kathryn Barth. "We really picked the right time to perform at our best. This was a fantastic weekend for us and the team worked really, really hard and I'm really proud of them."
The varsity eight withstood a push from fourth place Ithaca College to finish in third place with a time of 6:38.842, behind first place Williams College (6:35.379) and second place Bates (6:37.652). Ithaca finished with a time of 6:39.114, followed by Rochester Institute of Technology (6:40.072) in fifth and Wesleyan (Conn.) in sixth (6:47.274). Williams led throughout the race but was anything but comfortable, as Bates, the Blue, and Ithaca were all within two seconds of the Ephs in the middle 1000m. In the end, Williams finished two seconds ahead of Bates with a strong push to win the title.
"It truly was a full team effort," added senior Ali Rondeau. "It's been an honor to stand by everyone's side this whole time, through the training season. We've really just come so far since the beginning of March. I'm just so proud to wear Wellesley blue and to be graduating with these other seniors."
Less than a second separated the Blue from Bates through the opening 1000m of the second varsity race, as the two crews separated from Williams and Ithaca following a slow start from Wellesley. Bates pushed past the Blue over the final 1000m, building a three second lead by the finish to take gold in 6.48.332. Wellesley took silver in 6:51.502, followed by Williams (6:57.632) and Ithaca (6:58.362).
2017 New England Women's & Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Champion Wellesley College crew was making the program's eighth straight trip to the NCAA Championships.
Varsity Eight: 8- Emilia Ball (Albany, N.Y.), 7- Kathryn Barth (Bellevue, Wash.), 6- Rhiannon Mulligan (Santa Cruz, Calif.), 5- Ali Rondeau (Ocala, Fla.), 4- Molly Hoyer (Newton, N.J.), 3- Olivia Duggan (West Newbury, Mass.), 2- Anna Gaskill (Fairfax, Va.), 1- Alyssa Rivera (Killington, Vt.), C- Stephanie Kim (Wellesley, Mass.)
Second Varsity Eight: 8- Chloe Carlander (Austin, Texas), 7- Mia Caglieris (Hightstown, N.J. ), 6- Kelsey Campbell (Broomfield, Colo.), 5- Audrey Ellis (Lincolnshire, Ill.), 4- Hannah Barton (Bala Cynwyd, Pa.), 3- Faye Washburn (Seattle, Wash.), 2- Frances Dingivan (Salt Lake City, Utah), 1- Katie Livingston (Wellesley, Mass.), C- Sydney Stento (Boise, Idaho)