Harvard Heavyweights Take Two Races, Smith Cup from NU

Matthew Edstein, Nick Jordan and Jason Phillips (left to right) helped the Harvard varsity eight win its home finale.
Matthew Edstein, Nick Jordan and Jason Phillips (left to right) helped the Harvard varsity eight win its home finale.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—The Harvard heavyweight varsity and freshman eights defeated Northeastern Saturday morning on the Charles River Basin, securing the Smith Cup for the 14th straight season and sending all the Crimson eights to Eastern Sprints with unblemished records.

The Crimson varsity (6-0) topped the Huskies (0-5) by 14.7 seconds, while the freshmen held off their Boston neighbors by 1.2 seconds. The NU freshman four won the first heavyweight race of the morning, topping the Crimson by 2.9 seconds, while Harvard beat MIT by 6.3 seconds.

"It was a good morning overall," said Harry Parker, the Thomas Bolles Head Coach for Harvard Men's Crew. "It thought it was a good row by the varsity, and the freshmen had a great win in a race between two very good crews." 

Harvard took control of the varsity eight race early on, gaining an open-water advantage within the first 500 meters. The Crimson had more than a boat length of open water after another 500 and went on to finish in 5:56.7. Northeastern completed the two-kilometer course in 6:11.4. The win was Harvard's 20th in 23 years of Smith Cup competition.

The Crimson freshman eight was deadlocked with Northeastern through the first 1,000 meters but pulled slightly ahead after crossing under the Massachusetts Avenue bridge. Harvard steadily increased that advantage to three seats in the next 500 meters. Northeastern's sprint was not enough to catch Harvard, as the Crimson won in 6:03.1.

With no NU second varsity competing, the Crimson second and third varsities raced one another, with the second varsity prevailing. The Harvard fourth varsity eight rowed along with the freshmen, placing third.

In the freshman four event, Harvard trimmed Northeastern's open-water lead to a boat length, but the Huskies got the win in 7:01.9, while MIT placed third.

In addition to the varsity eight's 6-0 record, the Crimson second and third varsities head into the championship portion of the season with a 5-0 mark, while the freshman eight is 7-0.

Varsity Eight
Harvard 5:56.7
Northeastern 6:11.4

Freshman Eight
Harvard 6:03.1
Northeastern 6:04.3

Freshman Four
Northeastern 7:01.9
Harvard 7:04.8
MIT 8:11.1