Spring Breakthrough

Written by redshirt sophomore, Parin Patel

Spring break is the quintessential time for relaxation, coupled with week-long mayhem for college students worldwide. But for the USC Men’s Crew, this was a week of testing endurance, stretching limits, and maintaining an edge over the competition. During the week of March 14th-20th, the rowers traveled to Newport Beach, CA, where they pushed through seven days of grueling workouts that tested them physically and mentally. Thankfully, the team was able to raise enough money during the Nike online gear sale to stay comfortably close the training grounds at a local Best Western. The accommodations were appreciated and were vital to the overall success of the intense experience.

Coach Danny Johnson says, “Spring break is a time to tear yourself apart and empty your tanks in order to prepare for the weeks ahead.” The rowers committed to Coach Johnson’s expectations and worked constantly from dawn to dusk to ensure success in the coming weeks. The daily routine began with 6:00 AM wake-ups, followed by a two-hour row launching from the Newport Aquatic Center. Immediately after the rows, the rowers hit the weights in the gym. After a meal and a few hours of rest, they returned to the water for an afternoon row, then attended team dinners, and reposed for the night. The daily grind was also infused with various workouts conjured up by Coach Johnson. The rowers found themselves doing quite a bit of cross-training during the break. One afternoon, in particular, was spent performing a military-style workout, complete with uphill sprints and bear crawls. The Proctor Family was gracious enough to a treat the entire team to Southern BBQ dinner at Luciles’s Restaurant midweek and the Hasvold family cooked a delicious dinner for the team on the final night of training. Thank you to the families for feeding the men.

The Crew was motivated during the break by their success over Loyola Marymount University the previous week in a duel at the Port of Los Angeles. On March 13th, USC pushed through LMU with a 4.4 second lead over their opponents by the end of the race. Team Captain Ryan Hasvold commented, “The crew is set up to be really fast this season. The victory over LMU proves to be a sign that USC is headed for success this season.” The statistics also complement Captain Hasvold’s predictions. The previous week LMU claimed victory over UCLA in a duel at Marina Del Ray. They pushed through their opponent by over ten seconds in a 2,000 meter race. With USC’s win over LMU and their training over spring training, they appear to be headed in the right direction. The crew is set to race the country’s finest in the San Diego Crew Classic on March 27th and 28th.   Race times and heats are available here. Let us wish them luck and hail the age-old Trojan battle-cry: Fight On!

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