April 22, 2011
Center Valley, Pa. - Bucknell will go for its sixth-consecutive title while five teams try to dethrone the Bison at the Patriot League Rowing Championship Sunday morning on Lake Quinsigamond in Worcester, Mass.
The Bison were picked first in the preseason poll of the League's coaches and sports information directors in March, where they were followed in order by Navy, Colgate, Holy Cross, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Lehigh. Lane assignments will be based on the predicted order of finish in the preseason poll.
The 2011 Patriot League Rowing Championship is a full-field event that consists of varsity four, second varsity eight and varsity eight races. The event is scored on a weighted scale, with six points for the winner of the varsity four race, 12 for the second varsity eight and 18 for the varsity eight. If there is a tie in final point total, the higher-place finisher of the varsity eight race is crowned Patriot League champion. Awards will also be given for Coach of the Year and Boat of the Year, which goes to the winner of the varsity eight race.
The Patriot League Championship gets started with the varsity four race at 8 a.m., followed by the second varsity eight and varsity eight races.
The race will be held at Lake Quinsigamond for the fourth time after being contested there for the first three seasons from 2005-07. The Patriot League Championship had been held at Cooper River in Cherry Hill, N.J. for the past three years.
Bucknell was unanimously selected as the favorite by opposing coaches and sports information directors in the preseason, garnering all possible 10 first-place votes and 50 points. The Bison narrowly won the crown over Navy last season, with the Mids finishing just 2.2 seconds behind Bucknell in the varsity eight race. Bucknell won the varsity eight race for the fifth year in a row, taking the Boat of the Year award that comes with that victory. Stephen Kish won his fourth Patriot League Coach of the Year honor in the last five seasons.
Navy has won at least one race at four of the previous six Patriot League championships, and has finished second to Bucknell in the varsity eight race and overall in each of the past five seasons. Navy won the inaugural League Championship in 2005.
Colgate closed the gap on the top two teams in last year's varsity eight race, finishing less than 10 seconds behind the first-place Bison. Both the Mids and the Raiders garnered a first-place vote in the preseason poll.
Holy Cross has the advantage of racing at its home course, as the Crusaders will have competed on Lake Quinsigamond eight times this spring heading into the League Championship. Holy Cross sophomore Catherine Roy was selected to the USRowing National Team Pre-Elite Camp earlier in the spring.
MIT will compete in its second Patriot League Rowing Championship, and like Holy Cross has experience on Lake Quinsigamond after competing in an event with the Crusaders and three other schools last weekend.
Lehigh comes in under the direction of first-year Head Coach Brian Conley.
For more information, including directions to Lake Quinsigamond, visit the Patriot League Rowing Championship page here.