After losing its spring semi-final championship, wind changes for sailing team

Harrison Simon, Contributing Reporter

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After becoming Tulane’s 17th official varsity program in 2018, the Green Wave sailing team is looking to build on its inaugural season as it gears up for its second year as a varsity sport.

At last year’s national regatta, Tulane finished 15th out of 18 teams. While the team would have preferred a higher finish, team members say they feel the season as a whole was a valuable experience they can draw on moving forward.  

Photo courtesy of Parker Waters
The Tulane sailing fleet, pictured here, recently began its inaugural season.

Head coach Charles Higgins, who has been instrumental in developing the skills and resolve of the Green Wave sailors, knows his team is ready to take the next step, as its members have worked tirelessly during the off-season and in practices so far this year. 

“We’re one week into practice, and it’s been pretty terrific,” Higgins said in a press release. “It’s certainly been impactful in the quality of our practices, and that’s going to translate really well going forward with how competitive we’re going to be as a program.”

If this season’s first few competitions are any indication of things to come, the Tulane sailing team has plenty to be excited about. On Sept. 15, sophomore Ciara Rodriguez-Horan and freshman Cameron Giblin won their SEISA Singlehanded Qualifiers regattas to earn spots in the women’s and men’s ICSA Singlehanded National Championships, respectively. 

The championships will be held on Nov. 8-10 at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Additionally, the Green Wave team secured its own overall berth in the ICSA Match Race Championship after winning an elimination regatta. 

Photo courtesy of Parker Waters
Two members of the sailing team tack to adjust to changing winds.

This past weekend, Sept. 22-23, the Green Wave finished second overall in the Allstate Sugar Bowl Regatta, placing only behind the defending national champion, the College of Charleston. Performances by Rodriguez-Horan as well as sophomores Amelia Schofield, Grace Siwicki, Caroline Benson and junior Katie Cartiglia helped Tulane sail to an impressive early season finish. 

The Green Wave has seven more regattas on its schedule before its fall campaign culminates with the match race and singlehanded national championships, held the first and second weekends of November, respectively.

The Green Wave is two competitions away from home before returning to New Orleans for the Baldwin Wood regatta held on Oct. 12.