T.C. Williams made a clean sweep of the girls' division, but Fort Hunt terminated Williams' five-year reign in the boys' varsity eight competition in the Northern Virginia Championship Regatta yesterday at the Potomac Boat Club.
Only nine-tenths of a second separated the top three boats in the boys' varsity eights. Stuart took the early lead and held a slight margin over Ford Hunt and Williams until the final 300 meters. But Fort Hunt sprinted past the leader in the stretch and held off a charging Williams shell to take the title.
FOrt Hunt clocked 4:45.6, Williams, 4:46.2, and Stuart, 4:46.5 for the 1,500-meter course.
"We had a little bit of a problem with attitude (at the beginning of the season), but we've got that nailed down now,' said Fort Hunt stroke Eric Fladager. "And the thing is, we know we still haven't gotten there (to full potential) yet."
The Federals' victorious crew, from bow to stern, consists of Steve Fitzgerald, Matt Fesler, Mike Tolnay, Fric Vardac, Richard Califf, Chris Peterson, Garrie Losse, Fladager and coxswain Margaret Moore.
Fot Hunt also used a strong sprint to edge Washington-Lee by a half-length in the second eights. The winning time was 4:55.
Earlier, Washington-Lee edged Williams in the third eights contest in 4:49.5 and repeated as area light-weight eight champ with a length margin over Fort Hunt in 5:00.8.
Williams, whose top three boys' crews came into the regetta unbeaten, only to lose, was victorious only in the lower divisions. The Titans took the fourth eights contest by two lengths over Fort Hunt, while their feeder schools, George Washington and Hammond, captured the fifth and sixth eights races, respectively.
While the boys were taking their lumps, the Williams girls gained revenge for their close loss to St. Andrew's in last year's nationals by defeating the Middletown, Del., school with a time of 5:09.7 for 1,500 meters.
Williams had taken the two previous national championships before St. Andrew's grabbed the crown.
"We're more developed, we have more girls to choose from and a new boat," said varsity stroke Risi Kaye. "We haven't been challenged this year."
The Titan gold medalists, from bow to stern, were Michelle Welsh, Shawna McGowan, Jennifer Hall, Libby Ring, Polly Young, Peggy McKeon, Ruth Collins, Kaye and coxswain Debbie Constable.
The famile Titans also triumphed in the second and fourth eights, and GW won the junior fours. The third eight squad won by forfeit.