Silver & bronze

Men’s and women’s rowers don’t meet pre-season expectations at OUAs

The Queen’s rowers won silver and bronze medals at the OUA championship in St. Catharines on Saturday. The women’s team finished second overall behind the Western Mustangs while the men finished third behind the Mustangs and the Brock Badgers.

The women’s team were led by first-place finishes from their lightweight eight and lightweight single boats. Their lightweight double, lightweight four and heavyweight eight boats finished second and their heavyweight four finished third.

The women’s pre-season goal was to repeat last season’s gold medal. But lightweight eight rower Florence Hogg said the women’s team should be satisfied with the silver medal.

“We had a good season,” she said. “Western just had a better season.” The men’s lightweight eight and lightweight four were the only Queen’s crews to reach the podium. Heavyweight eight rower Rami Maassarani said it was a disappointing weekend.

“The men’s heavyweight boats underperformed,” he said. “We’d come third in every race before that … we don’t know what happened.”

Maassarani said the men came into the weekend expecting a top-two finish in the heavyweight men’s eight event and first-place victories for the smaller boats. None of those goals were met.

“With about half the guys graduating this year, it wasn’t the best way to end things,” he said.

The lightweight men fared better, posting bronze medals in the eight-man and four-man races.

Both the men’s and the women’s team will compete in the national championship next weekend in Welland, but they won’t be sending all their boats. Maassarani said nationals aren’t a top priority because they aren’t an official Canadian Interuniversity Sport competition.

There’s no lightweight eight competition at nationals, so those rowers will be spread among other Queen’s boats.

“The combinations will only be a week old,” Maassarani said. “So we won’t be polished.”

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