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Sailing prepares for PCCSC Championship, men’s rowing hosts rival Cal

The Stanford sailing team (above) competes in the PCCSC coed conference championship tomorrow and Sunday. The women's team won their conference championship last weekend (JOHN TODD/isiphotos.com).

Over this weekend, the Stanford sailing team will tack against the wind at the PCCSC Coed Conference Championship, an event that the Cardinal has had little trouble with in seasons past. Meanwhile, the Stanford men’s rowing team will find itself at Redwood Shores on Saturday to compete against arch-nemesis Berkeley.

The sailing team ended last weekend with a double whammy, winning the  PCCSC Women’s Conference Championship as the best out of 10 teams and then going on to claim first at the Admirals Cup. The team has won 10 of the past 16 tournaments, but last weekend’s Tale of Two Victories was the first time Stanford has won multiple competitions over a single weekend this season.

Saturday marked Stanford’s 15th straight women’s conference title, secured through the stellar performance of the A Division squad — sophomore skipper Stephanie Houck, with junior crew Taylor Kirkpatrick and freshman crew Ashton Borcherding — as well as the B Division — sophomore skipper Sophia Sole and freshman skipper Camille White, with senior crew Cassie Obel and junior crew Madeline Bubb. The Cardinal won handily with a 14-point margin.

The same day, the Cardinal found themselves in troubled waters at the beginning of the Admirals Cup. But Stanford surged ahead from sixth place to prevail with a 199-point victory over Dartmouth’s 201 — one of the closest wins of the year.

The Cardinal armada hits the waters again tomorrow in the PCCSC Coed Conference Championships on April 27-28 in San Francisco Bay. Stanford won the team race handily last year, not losing to a single competitor. The coed dinghy races also turned to Stanford’s favor. The Cardinal beat out the next-best team, UC Santa Barbara, with an eight-point margin, and the third-best team, Cal, by a whopping 62 points.

After the Pacific Coast Conference Championships, Stanford hits the road once more for a chance at redemption at the ICSA National Tournament in Newport, RI. At last year’s coed tournament, the Cardinal were able to finish in fifth place, behind the MIT Engineers, Charleston Cougars, Georgetown Hoyas and Hobart & William Statesmen. The last time the Cardinal won an ICSA Team Race Championship was back in 1997.

The sailing team will begin competing Saturday morning at San Francisco Bay.

The men’s rowing team prepares for a maritime clash against Bay-rival Cal this Saturday, and the waters are looking warm. Like the sailing team, Stanford’s rowers recently surged out of a deficit to claim first place. On Sunday, April 14, the Varsity Eight of Ryan Buchanan, Martin Amethier, Bart Scherpbier, Peter Chatain, James Wright, Nikita Lilichenko, Nick Mayhew, Drew Taylor and Will Nuelle clocked in a 5:56.6 finish, just barely enough to overcome Wisconsin’s 5:58.3. The Second and Third Varsity Eights weren’t as lucky against the Badgers, taking second place in both events.

The Golden Bears are in the middle of a strong season, having just wrapped up a visit to the Pacific Northwest by beating Oregon State in three of three races — a maritime victory akin to the Portuguese’s 1509 dominance at Diu. And not just complacent with their first varsity eight, Cal’s freshman and third varsity eights took first and second place, respectively. Needless to say, they won’t be a fish out of water at Redwood Shores.

Last time the Cardinal faced their Bay-rival mano-a-mano at the Shores, Cal won all three races of the tournament, all by margins greater than 10 seconds. The Cardinal have a shot at victory, but they will have to fight for it.

Prepare for havoc on the high seas; the meet against Cal begins at 9 a.m. PST on Saturday at Redwood Shores.

Contact Arman Kassam at armank ‘at’ stanford.edu.

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