GAINESVILLE, GA -- The impressive 2018 season for the Orange Coast College men's crew continued on May 26-27 at the American Collegiate Rowing Association (ACRA) National Championships as the Pirates finished third overall out of 75 of the top programs in the nation.
With just five boats in the championships, Coast finished with 349 team points and trailed only the University of Michigan (685 points) and the University of Virginia (391) for the top overall team national title.
After qualifying seventh in the time trials, the Pirate Varsity 8 squad reached the finals and took on the best of the best and finished sixth overall with a time of 6 minutes, 1.4 seconds, slightly behind fifth-place Notre Dame (6:01.2), but topping the University of Massachusetts (6:01.85) and UC Santa Barbara (6:03.18). Michigan took home the top spot with a time of 5:55.69, followed by Boston College (5:56.26), Virginia (5:57.62) and the University of North Carolina (5:57.98).
In the Men's Second Varsity 8 race, Coast again qualified for the national finals and there, the Pirates finished fifth out of 16 boats with a time of 6:45.27, behind Michigan (6:08.58), UNC (6:11.98), Boston College (6:13.53) and UCSB (6:13.83).
OCC's Novice 8 capped off a dominating season with a bronze medal finish out of 25 boats with a time of 6:11.52. Only Delaware (6:05.82) and Virginia (6:06.4) topped the Pirates, while OCC finished ahead of Notre Dame (6:14.72), Michigan (6:14.86), UC Irvine (6:22.77), Michigan State (6:28.81) and Bucknell (6:29.9).
In another impressive performance, OCC's Second Novice 8 boat reached the the finals and finished second in the nation with a time of 6:30.1, trailing only Michigan (6:21.4) for the top spot. Coast edged out Notre Dame at the wire, putting the Fighting Irish in third with a time of 6:30.9, followed by Virginia (6:32.1), UCLA (6:37.9), UC Davis (6:54.8) and UCSB (7:27.5).
OCC's Varsity 4 boat did not advance to the championship race, but still posted a solid 19th-place time of 7:13.39, finishing third in the "C" Final, trailing only Emory (7:06.23) and Clemson (7:08.56) for the top spot in that event.
In addition to the solid team performances, several members of the Pirate men's crew earned All-Region and All-American honors.
Pirate rowers Caleb O'Neil and Daniel Amado earned spots on the West All-Region Team, while head coach Cam Brown was the West Region Coach of the Year.
Amado continued to pick up the hardware by earning Second Team, All-American honors, while freshmen Cole Guild and Joe Battisti were selected to this year's All-American Freshman Team.
Up next for the Pirates is the Henley Royal Regatta in England on the River Thames, from June 29-July 8.