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Sports Shorts: Ratcliffe earns nation's top mark with hammer throw, men heavy and lightweights earn victories

Ratcliffe Shines at Monmouth Season Opener

Sophomore Julia Ratcliffe is the new NCAA leader in the hammer throw for the spring season, as she threw 66.31 m (217-6.50 ft) this past weekend at the Monmouth Season Opener in West Long Branch, N.J. The throw catapulted Ratcliffe from the fourth best throw in the nation to the top of the list, but is still short of her Princeton and Ivy League record of 68.80 (225-8.75) set last spring. The second-highest throw in the nation is currently 64.91 (212-11).

Other throwers turned out strong performances at Monmouth as well, as sophomore Brielle Rowe was second in the discus with a mark of 37.50, followed by senior Chelsea Cioffi with a 33.84 that was good enough for fifth. In the javelin, senior Ashley Vandolah and junior Sarah Waszkewitz finished seventh and eighth, respectively, as Vandolah threw 35.40 and Waszkewitz marked at 33.60.

The Tigers will host their first 2014 meet at Weaver Stadium this weekend, at the Sam Howell Invitational on Friday and Saturday.

Princeton heavyweight men victorious in their season opener

In its first race of the spring, the men’s heavyweight side took down visitors Syracuse University and Georgetown University in the sixth annual season-opening scrimmage between these teams. The Princeton men’s last race came in late October at the Princeton Chase before the harsh weather claimed Lake Carnegie. They were victorious in the event, with the varsity eight edging out Northeastern University. Current rankings place the Tigers at fourth in the nation.

Eight a.m. marked the beginning of the first race this past Saturday. With a time of 6:05.0, the Tigers’ varsity eight boat outpaced Syracuse’s top unit by a shade under six seconds. Princeton had similar success in the second varsity boat, as the 2V boat put in a time of 6:15.2. Syracuse, again in second, posted a mark of 6:30.5 in the second race. In the third and fourth matchups, the Orange got the best of the Orange and Black with a pair of under-five-second wins.

Next weekend, the Princeton heavies will travel to Annapolis, Md. to face the Navy crew. Last year saw the Tigers take hold of the Navy-Princeton Cup.

Brown edges out Princeton openweight to claim 1987 Trophy

The yearly matchup with Brown is billed as a race for the Class of 1987 Trophy. This season at Lake Carnegie, in their spring opener, the Princeton women were edged out by the Bears in the varsity eight race by just three seconds. Michigan State University’s crew also joined the regatta, but they found little success and were bested in the first and second varsity eight along with the varsity four races.

Princeton’s 8V time of 6:48.6 was not enough to overcome a Brown lead and time of 6:45.6. The Tigers’ second and third varsity eight managed the home side’s only wins of the day with times of 6:54.8 and 7:18.5.

An imminent showdown with 2013’s national champion the University of Virginia will put Princeton to the test next weekend. The races will begin at 10:30 a.m. at Lake Carnegie.

Fosburgh Cup goes to Tiger lightweights

The first three races of the season yielded three wins for Princeton lightweight crew. Saturday’s regatta pitted the Tigers against Georgetown’s Hoyas in what was a fairly constant downpour.

Just over 23 seconds separated the Tigers’ varsity eight from the runner-up visitors. In a truly dominant showing, Princeton’s 2V and 3V went one and two in the second race, with Georgetown’s second group of eight finishing a full 34 seconds behind Princeton’s second varsity time of 6:27.6.

Worthy of note, Princeton’s varsity eight was heavy with underclassmen. The coxswain and five of the eight rowers were from the sophomore and freshman classes. Three juniors filled out the boat. This matches up with preseason expectations for what would be a strong but young unit.

The race for the Murtaugh Cup against Navy comes next for Princeton. Located in Teaneck, N.J., the regatta will also feature Columbia’s crew.


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