Hillen Cup – USC vs UCLA

Hello USC Men’s Crew Alumni, Parents and Friends,

Since the Crew Classic the Varsity team has matured, gained new confidence, and developed trust within the squad. Our practices have been focused and executed with clear purpose- to beat UCLA.   This past weekend our Trojan’s blasted off the line, stroke for stroke with the nationally ranked UCLA boat.   The Crews were even at the 500-meter mark and we had 1 seat lead by the 1000.   This was the best first thousand our squad has ever had.

As the Bruins began their move in the second half of the race, and started taking seats, our technique faded. We ended up losing the race in the last 500 meters and when the UCLA boat finished, with a loud roar, our boys broke, losing by 11 second.

The Novice Crew showed progress as they executed a full race plan on Ballona Creek. Early in the race the Bruins gained an advantage, staying with their high strokes longer than the Trojans, and slowly grew their lead down the course. The Novice crew had some trouble with the direct headwind, but handled their defeat and shirt exchange with honor.

The Crews did not race last year and we are happy to renew the rivalry.   UCLA has become a very fast club crew over the last few years, and are now an excellent gauge of national speed. The loss is hard to swallow, but our Crew is strong and will get to see the Bruins twice more this season.   We look forward to redemption at the Pac-10 and will have our final test at the American College Rowing Association Club National Championship in Oak Ridge, TN May 23-24.

A big thank you goes out all of the parents, friends, and fans who came out to cheer on the Crew this weekend.   We really appreciate your support.   Our Brunch at the California Yacht Club was delightful.   It was a chance for our rowers, their families, and our supporters to get to know each other, and hear stories of the re-birth of the Crew from former Captain, Chris Wilkinson.   It was a great event, and we hope to do something similar next year in the Port of LA!


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