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Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Gennaro and Mastracci Medal at World Cup II

Syracuse alums Mike Gennaro '11 and Natalie Mastracci '13 were on the podium at the the World Rowing Cup II in Lake Aiguebelette, France. 

After an injury in the US men's eight, Gennaro stepped in and helped row the American eight to gold, taking the lead right from the start in the final and leading over the entire 2,000-meter course, beating second-place Great Britain by a second and a half and third-place Belarus by 2.5 ticks.

The American M4- then put in a gutsy effort, with Gennaro doubling up and another member of the crew racing ill, the USA four raced in the second position up until the final 500 meters when they were passed by Australia. Great Britain won the race, with the Aussies second and the USA third.

Mastracci rowed the seven seat of the Canadian women's eight, which won the silver in a time of 6:05.82. The US won in a time of 6:04.77, and Great Britain finished third in a time of 6:11.39.

Mastracci also raced in the Canadian women’s pair with Susanne Grainger. After reaching the podium in World Cup I, they finished out of the medals.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

$22,000 after 1,500 Hours in Annual Endowment Campaign

We are 1,500 hours down (60 days) into our 2,000 hour piece and we have already raised close to $22,000!  The last 500 - less than three weeks. Syracuse successful competed in its 120th IRA. The varsity eight exceeded its pre-regatta seeding. While we can no longer be in a boat and pull an oar, one of the best way to support the team is by contributing to the SARA Crew Endowment. The time is NOW to click below or write a check. It is time for everyone to put their oar in the water.

The endowment has grown to over $240,000. Since the Endowment inception, we have close to 60 people have contributed over $1,000 to the SARA Men’s crew endowment and close to 160 alumni and friends that have contributed more than one year. 

The class years of 1965 – 1969 continue to hold their slim lead in the number of contributors. The class of 1995 – 1999 has put a big push in the past 250m and are only 3 seats down. The class years of 1980 – 1984 still lead in the dollars contributed category.   Remember shirts for the winning class years. We cross the line on June 18, 2014 at 8am. 

We will continue to give update every 10 days via email and the SARA blog.  Below is the link to or address to donate to the SARA Men’s Crew Endowment. All donations are tax deductable. If there are any questions, please contact Joe Kieffer ’88 – 267-228-1341  or Thank you in advance for your support of Syracuse Rowing.

SU Men 16th at IRA

The No. 18 Syracuse men's varsity eight crew concluded its 2014 season on Sunday by finishing 16th overall at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) Regatta on Lake Mercer in West Windsor, New Jersey.

The Orange V8 placed fourth in the third level final, while its second varsity eight was second in its third level final to finish 14th overall and the third varsity eight was fifth in the petite final for an 11th-place finish overall.

The Orange's 16th-place overall finish out-performed its seeding by two positions.

Washington won the V8 grand final for the fourth year in a row with Brown and Cal rounding out the podium.

For info on each race, including times and line-ups, go to

For all the IRA times, go to

Saturday, May 31, 2014

SU Men's 3V in IRA Petites and 1V and 2V in 3rd Level

SU's 1V placed third in its semi-final, and the 2V finished second to place both crews in their respective the third level finals.

The 3V finished fifth in its semi-final, so it will compete in the petite final.

A race recap is on All race results are on

SU Men's 1V, 2V, 3V into IRA Semi-Finals

SU's three boats will race in the semi-finals of their events at the IRA National Championship Saturday. All three advanced by virtue of their finishes in their respective repechages.

Results are posted on A quote from Coach Dave Reischman and the start times for Saturday's semi's are on

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

IRA Announces Its Selections

Today the Intercollegiate Rowing Association announced its list of crews for the 2014 IRA Regatta. SU's men's 1V and 2V eights will square off against 23 other crews in their respective events Friday, May 30-Sunday, June 1 on Mercer Lake in New Jersey.

SU's 3V eight is among the 18 competitors in that event. The entire list of Accepted Crews, including BU, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth and Navy from SU's dual-race schedule, is available on Additional information about the IRA Regatta is available on row2k's IRA Resource page.


Virginia and Notre Dame to Represent the ACC at the NCAA Championship

Today the NCAA announced the contestants for this year's women's Division I Rowing National Championship. Virginia received an automatic berth for winning the ACC, and Notre Dame received an at-large selection. Syracuse did not receive a bid.

All the information, including a video presentation of the selections and heats, can be found on

Eastern Sprints Race Report, Including IRA Bid

Men's head rowing Coach Dave Reischman has has circulated his post-Eastern Sprints race report, including the mention that Tuesday is the day IRA invitations will be announced.

Results Summary:
V8 = 14th
JV8 = 11th
3V8 = 12th
4V8 = 4th

I am going to take a different approach for this race report and rather than my usual run down on specific crews just make some general comments on our squad as a whole.  I think the results speak for themselves and suffice it to say nobody in our program finds them very satisfying.  We may not have the raw physical talent that we did a few years ago but we have not performed up to our potential in very many races this year.  We haven’t had that race where you can get off the water and say, “that was it…that was the aggressive rhythm we were looking for.”  If there is good news it is the fact that the type of errors we are making on the race course are not due to lack of effort.  The guys are putting it all out there.

Let me try to explain that last comment a little better.  Rowing, and in particular racing, is a study of contrast between the aggression/raw power needed when the blades are in the water with the finesse/subtlety required when the blades are out of the water.  On the drive you are trying to maximize your propulsion and on the recovery you are trying to move in a way that does not slow the boat down and sets up your timing for the next stroke.  If you let the finesse of the recovery carry in to the drive you look slick but don’t have the surge and lift of the boat out of the water that you need to generate boat speed.  If you carry the aggressiveness of the drive into the recovery phase you take some of the “glide” off the boat and usually slightly mistime the change of direction on the front end.  When you get the right balance between the two the boat feels light and lively on the drive and the recovery feels relaxed and easy—like you are literally floating up the slide between strokes.  When you get it wrong….well it feels like a lot of hard work for not much boat speed. 

Our varsity crew was a good example of both of these yesterday.  In the heat we had our best race of the year.  A good start and decent rhythm through the middle of the race.  It wasn’t perfect but as close as we have been this year.  We do not have the raw physical talent of the top crews in our league but if you look at the times from the heats you will see that we were improved relative to margins of crews we raced earlier in the year.  (Note:  I usually never compare times across heats but the conditions were as equal across the heats in the morning as you can get.)  The guys were disappointed to be in the 3rd level final but were in the right frame of mind heading out to the race.  They had an awesome warm up…maybe the best of the year…and then when the flag dropped we tried to be ultra aggressive and didn’t find that balance between aggression and subtlety.  We worked very hard but did not maximize our speed.  The difference is probably about 4 to 5 seconds over a 2000m race but those are a crucial 4 to 5 seconds in our league.  Our other crews were struggling with many of the same issues.

We will find out on Tuesday if we did enough to get invited to the IRA and we are all hopeful.  I learned long ago as a coach that some years you have better talent than others and whether you are fighting for a spot in a grand final or the 3rd level final your job is to maximize your crew’s potential.  We haven’t done that yet and coaches and athletes alike need to accept responsibility for that.  If one of us starts to point fingers instead of focusing on what each of us needs to do we are going to be disappointed. 

If we get the invite for the IRA our goal is simple:  to finish the weekend saying it was our best racing of the year and we maximized every bit of boat speed that we were capable of generating.

I need to give a special thanks to all the parents (those present and those from afar) that helped out with the food tent in Worcester.  In particular, Anneliese and Doug Mund who led the efforts with the very capable of assistance of many others.  I know our coaching staff sure appreciated the ability to wander over for a breakfast burrito (…and burger….and pulled pork…) and drink to keep us going through out the day.  Thanks to you all!

I will keep everyone posted on the IRA.