Semis begin at ICSA Women’s Nationals

Published on May 22nd, 2018

Norfolk, VA (May 22, 2018) – The 2018 Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association’s series of National Championships began today on the Elizabeth River with the Sperry College Sailing Women’s Semifinal Championship hosted by Old Dominion University. The semifinals are the precursor and qualifying event for the Sperry College Sailing Women’s National Championship Finals, which will begin Thursday, May 24 at 10 a.m.

The semifinals are divided into two fleets, an Eastern and Western semifinal, each with 18 teams from across the nation. The top nine teams from each fleet will advance to the finals, with Yale University and Hobart and William Smith Colleges tied for the Eastern lead while College of Charleston is dominating the Western fleet.

The day of racing began on time around 10 a.m. under partly sunny skies with temperatures in the mid 70s and light shifty winds from the south/southwest around 3-6 knots. By the afternoon the temperature warmed up into the 80s and the winds built to a steady 6-10 knots from the south. The Western fleet sailed in Z420s and the Eastern fleet sailed in FJs.

Racing finished up around 5:45-6 p.m. for both fleets. Eight races were completed in A-division and 6 races in B-division. B-division will race first tomorrow and racing is scheduled to begin at the same time at 10 a.m. Tomorrow the two fleets will switch boats, so the Eastern fleet will sail the Z420s and the Western will sail FJs. A-division has 10 races to complete tomorrow and B-division will have 12 as long as the conditions allow.

“The race committee did a great job getting races off and getting the course squared up,” says Tyler Colvin, assistant coach for the host school Old Dominion. “They tried to move racing in as close to the dock as possible for viewing and for efficient rotations. There was lots of racing and no hiccups today.”

“Today was a long hot day and we focused on staying hydrated,” says Bill Healy, assistant coach for Yale University, who is currently leading the Eastern semifinal fleet. “We had to pay attention to the course moving and positioning on the race course.

“Tomorrow we will build on what we learned today. We will work on shifting our focus into the 420s and taking it one race at a time.”

Sailing for Yale University is Casey Klingler ’18 with Katharina (KB) Knapp ’18 in A-division and Louisa Nordstrom ’20 with Graceann Nicolosi ’20 in B-division.

Hobart and William Smith Colleges is tied with Yale with 58 points, but in second place, due to Yale having more high place finishes. Boston University is in third place with 74 points.

In the Western fleet College of Charleston is in the lead with 44 points, followed by Harvard University in second place with 77 points. The University of South Florida is in third place with 97 points.

“The conditions this morning were tricky and light and the shifts rolled down the course unpredictably,” says Mitch Hall, assistant coach for Charleston. “The race committee moved the course closer to shore as the tide came in, so the sailors could not get complacent with the conditions and had to keep checking them between races.

“Our goal today was to stay conservative and not take too many chances and we will have the same plan for tomorrow. It was a long day of sailing so the women will need to focus on not peaking too early and staying vivacious and hydrated. We had good boat speed and hope to enjoy the next three days of racing. Our whole women’s team is here and it’s great to see everyone pitching in and cheering each other on – it’s neat to see.”

Sailing for Charleston in A-division is Alie Toppa ’20 with Annabel Carrington ’19 and Paris Henken ’19 with Liza Toppa ‘20 in B-division.

Today was a long day of racing and the scores are close for the top nine teams in both fleets. Tomorrow more close and competitive sailing will continue in the semifinals. It will be the last day of racing in the semifinals portion of the championship. No race will start after 5 p.m. tomorrow. The top 18 teams will be determined and they will advance to the finals on Thursday.

Top Nine Teams Eastern Semifinal, Day 1:
1. Yale University, 58
2. William Smith College, 58
3. Boston University, 74
4. University of Rhode Island, 82
5. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 87
6. Stanford University, 93
7. Brown University, 102
8. George Washington University, 104
9. St. Mary’s College of Maryland, 123

Top Nine Teams Western Semifinal, Day 1:
1. College of Charleston, 44
2. Harvard University, 77
3. University of South Florida, 97
4. Boston College, 99
5. University of Pennsylvania, 101
6. U.S. Coast Guard Academy, 101
7. Dartmouth College, 106
8. Cornell University, 123
9. Georgetown University, 125

Event detailsEastern SemifinalsWestern Semifinals

The top nine teams from each fleet will advance to the Finals Round – an 18-boat regatta on May 24-25.

Follow the events live via the regatta app from US Sailing plus live video coverage on May 25 for the final day of racing.

Background: The ICSA is the governing authority for sailing competition at colleges and universities throughout the United States and in some parts of Canada. There are seven Conferences that schedule and administer regattas within their established geographic regions, with ICSA hosting two national championships in the fall (singlehanded, match racing) and three national championships in the spring (team, women’s, coed).

2018 Spring Nationals – Norfolk, VA
5/22-25 – Women’s National Championship
5/26-28 – Team Race National Championship
5/29-6/1 – Coed National Championship

Source: Jennifer Mitchell |Toile à Voile for ICSA

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