PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (May 13, 2012) - The final two boats to earn a spot in the 2012 Dad Vail semifinals wrapped up their season Saturday as they were unable to break into the grand finals that afternoon.
The women's Novice 4 hit the waters early at 7:32 a.m. but came up short in their efforts with a sixth-place finish (8:04.173). Miami narrowly edged out the Tars crew for fifth with a time of 8:03.982. Fordham took top honors in this event. The finish was an incredibly respectable one for the five young ladies who had never taken a stroke prior to the start of the season. Overall, their time registered would've placed them 14th out of a field of 54 boats entered.
"This was a great experience for these women and I hope they have developed a passion and love for the sport which will keep them around for the next three years at Rollins," said head coach Shawn Pistor. "The competition only gets harder at the varsity level and these ladies have the potential to help Rollins be competitive there."
On the men's side, the Varsity 8 posted their best finish in that event in over 10 years. Earning a spot in the semifinals was a huge accomplishment and breaking into the top-12 in the country for the small championships was just in their cards this season.
The Varsity 8 was in fourth in their semifinal race on Saturday, which would've put them in the petite finals Saturday afternoon, but could not hold on as Oklahoma City Rowing (6:04.419) edged the Tars (6:07.101) by three seconds.
"This is the fastest boat Rollins has had in my years coaching," Pistor said. "It also seemed that every other school out there had a fast year."
Rollins now finishes ranked between 12th and 18th for the small colleges. The Tars will say goodbye to six seniors (Nick Pittari, Eric Pagan, Rob Spolsino, Tim Mazzotta, Brian Burch and Ryan Webb) but have passed along a solid work ethic to the underclassmen and have shown them the commitment it takes to be competitive at the varsity level.
Dad Vail concludes the 2012 season for the Tars but look forward to continuing with the men and women who will return for the fall season.