PHILADELPHIA - The Drake rowing team won the 2012 Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta women's varsity heavyweight 4+ race Saturday afternoon. The Bulldogs clocked in at 7:47.927 in the finals to take home the Maragaret McNiff trophy as they beat Old Dominion (7:52.018), Duke (7:54.607), Fordham (8:00.591), North Carolina (8:03.207) and Robert Morris (8:14.403
Jacque Nowers (Ames, Iowa) (coxswain), Kat Moore (Brooklyn Center, Minn.), Susan Goullette (New Brighton, Minn.), Sarah Travis (Casa Grande, Ariz.) and Maggie Benhart (St. Charles, Ill.) raced for Drake today.
"I felt like we kept getting stronger as the weekend went on and I was proud they weren't satisfied with winning our heat and our semifinal and I asked them if they were satisfied after the semifinal and they said no they came to win a medal," Drake head coach Charlie DiSilvestro said. "We followed the race plan and didn't panic as the only non-scholarship team in the final and we beat some incredible teams. We showed great discipline and maturity. The captain leadership from Kat and Susan was outstanding, our freshman coxswain, Jacque, made all the right calls and our two freshman rowers (Maggie and Sarah) rowed with great maturity."
The Bulldogs posted a time of 7:31.749 in the semifinals to advance to the finals. Drake outraced Duke (7:34.380), Colgate (7:35.023), Vermont (7:42.859), Ohio State (7:51.347) and Saint Josephs (8:04.413) in the semis.
The Dad Vail was the final competition of the 2012 spring season for Drake. The Bulldogs captured the 2012 MAAC conference championship two weeks ago; it was the first conference championship in school history.