RALEIGH, N.C. – The No. 17 Duke rowing team finished first in four of five grand finals and took first-place overall with 99 points in the inaugural Lake Wheeler Invitational on Lake Wheeler Saturday afternoon.
The Blue Devils, who co-hosted the event with neighbor North Carolina, started the day with five first-place finishes in each heat, including the V8, 2V8, 3V8, 2V4 and V4, setting them up in lane two for each of the grand final races.
The successful morning races were the first races to be completed for Duke since the Big Ten/ACC Dual on April 6 in Charlottesville, Va. The Blue Devils traveled to Clemson, S.C., last weekend, but failed to get any racing in due to tornadoes and storms in the Clemson area. Duke and UNC had to cancel day one action yesterday as thunderstorms and high winds halted racing.
In the first final race of the day, Navy took the top spot with a time of 6:26.570 in the V8, followed by Michigan State (6:29.168) and Duke (6:31.508). The Blue Devils bounced back from their third-place V8 finish with four straight first-place finishes in the remaining final races, starting with the 2V8 race, which saw Duke pull ahead of Michigan State by a little over two seconds with a time of 6:26.358. (MSU registered a 6:28.557 time).
The Duke A boat took first in the 3V8 (6:51.656) by just under six seconds over the second-place Duke B boat, who recorded a time of 6:57.856. In the V4, the Blue Devils clocked a time of 7:12.900, while Central Florida placed second (7:18.200). The 2V4 crew rounded out the first-place finishes for the Blue Devils (7:23.398 with a five second victory over Navy (7:28.092).
“This is something we have had in the works for a year,” said head coach Megan Cooke Carcagno. “We realize this weekend is really hard on our student-athletes to travel, so Sarah and I put our heads together last year and we said ‘what can we do to bring more racing and more schools to the triangle area. It was just phenomenal.”
“Today was all about the team,” stated Cooke Carcagno. “The team stepped up in a major way, all the events winning except the varsity eight, I think it was a phenomenal day for our team. The depth is incredible, the spirit is there, I think we have to put a final few gears in order and I think we are going to have a great ACC Championship.”
Duke next competes in the two-day ACC Championships in Clemson, S.C., Friday, May 17 and ending Saturday, May 18.
Final Morning Results (Heats)
V8: 1. Duke 6:41.966, 2. Clemson 6:45.330, 3. Miami 6:52.147
2V8: 1. Duke 6:39.644, 2. Clemson 6:45.019, 3. Miami 7:06.955
V4: 1. Duke 7:22.070, 2. Temple 7:33.332, 3. Miami 7:39.242
3V8: 1. Duke A 6:46.832, 2. Clemson 7:01.287
3V8: 1. Duke B 6:58.206, 2. North Carolina B 7:17.115, 3. North Carolina A 7:21.688
2V4: 1. Duke 7:27.444, 2. 7.41.949, 3. North Carolina 7:55.375
Final Afternoon Results (Finals)
V8: 1. Navy 6.26.570, 2. Michigan State 6:29.168, 3. Duke 6:31.508
2V8: 1. Duke 6:26.358, 2. Michigan State 6:28.557, 3. Central Florida 6:42.035
3V8: 1. Duke A 6:51.656, 2. Duke B 6:57.856, 3. Navy 6:59.563
V4: 1. Duke 7:12.900, 2. Central Florida 7:18.200, 3. North Carolina 7:29.700
2V4: 1. Duke 7:23.398, 2. Navy 07.28.092, 3. Central Florida 7:33.409
1. Duke 99
2. Navy 71
3. Central Florida 70
4. Michigan State 66
5. Clemson 59
6. Temple 39
7. North Carolina 38
8. Miami 25
9. Georgetown 21