T. C. Williams' varsity eight waited for more than a half-hour at the starting line for tardy Washington-Lee, then whipped the Generals and Northeast Catholic of Philadelphia in a season-opening crew race yesterday at the Alexandria Scholastic Rowing Facility.
Williams also swept the four other boys events with the day's final race, the junior eights, canceled because of choppy water in the Potomac.
W-L scored an easy victory in the girls' varsity race with Williams taking the girls' lightweight eight and fourth eight (novice) honors.
The boys' varsity race was scheduled for 10:30 a.m., and hour earlier if unfavorable racing conditions appeared imminent. Though the Potomac became increasingly choppy as the morning passed, the Generals did not tow their shell until 10 a.m. and did not reach the starting line until 11:05.
The T.C. crew, from bow to stern Andy Johnson, Mark Michalowski, Chris Pfeifer, Alex Audilet, Kevin Michalowski, George Nalls, Jerrell Darkow, stroke Steve Slough and coxswain Sean McGowan, jumped out quickly and grabbed a half-boat-length lead over Northeast Catholic.
Williams extended its advantage to more than a length before Catholic's No. 1 oarsman jumped his seat, allowing gaining W-L to grab the runner-up spot. Williams finished four lengths ahead in 5:12 for the 1,500-meter course, 12 seconds better than W-L.
"I was surprised we won so easily," Williams Coach Jon Butler said. "They (Williams) were rowing hard. They were scared. You're always scared for the first race."
W-L's girls jumped out immediately to a length lead over two Williams competitors in the girls' featured race. By midpoint, the General's shell (from bow to stern Virginia Foxwell, Beth Quinn, Barbara Shuman, Marta Acha, Karen Munly, Denise Gross Laura Teschendorf, stroke Karen Magee and coxswain Carly Landry) was four lengths ahead, finishing in 6:02. Williams "A" crew was 20 seconds behind.
"It doesn't matter very much," W-L girl's Coach Tom Chisnell said. "It wasn't Dee's (Williams' girls' Coach Dee Campbell) best. He had some novices in with his varsity. I still expect us to be the team to beat as the season gets older."
In the college opener at Thompson's Water Sports Center, Georgetown received an added treat when, in addition to sweeping the three races, its junior varsity boat finished second in the varsity match.
GU's varsity of Steve Kreisher, Don Donahue, James Costello, Alex Chapman, Mark Wessel, Chris Walsh, Ford Smith, stroke David McAneny and coxswain Carol Stewart covered the 2,000-meter course in 5:48.2. That was a length better than its jayvee, which nipped St. Joseph's of Philadelphia for second. Virginia brought up the rear.
GU also won freshman fours and eights battles.
On the Severn River in Annapolis Georgetown's varsity women clocked 5:39 for a five-second triumph over the Navy hosts. Navy won the novice race by two lengths over St. Joe's which edged GU for second.