Weather conditions cut short Saturday’s crew regatta at Williams Wharf in Mathews. High winds and rough waters tossed one rower out of a boat and flipped a four-man shell before the East River event was called off with just three races completed.
The only event Mathews High School raced was the men’s varsity four. Conditions in the first 1,250 meters were fairly decent and coming off the start Mathews rowers Cole Johnson, Andrew Merz, Phillip Machen, Zach Payne and coxswain Trevor Thomas found themselves in a battle with Gloucester, as West Potomac and Great Bridge started to fall back after the first 500 meters.
The stroke-for-stroke race continued all the way to the finish line resulting in a photo-finish call by referee David Birdsall, declaring Mathews the winner by three-hundredths of a second.
Despite the conditions, Gloucester High School rowers did well in both races they competed in. The senior four finished less than a second behind Mathews. Following Gloucester were Great Bridge, West Potomac, Granby and Christchurch. Granby’s boat swamped after the finish and the rowers and boat were ferried safely and quickly back to shore in two safety launches.