PHILADELPHIA - In the first cup race of the 2012 season, the University of Pennsylvania lightweight rowing team will head to Ithaca, N.Y., to take on No. 5 Cornell for the Matthews-Leonard Cups. No. 1 Harvard will join Saturday at the Cayuga Inlet as a guest.
The third varsity boats will start the day in Central New York at 8:40 a.m. Penn's freshmen, who won both races in the season opener last weekend, start at 9 a.m. Then its the cup race between the varsity boats at 9:20 a.m. The second varsity concludes the day at 9:40 a.m.
This will be the 67th Matthews-Leonard Cup race. Cornell has won 39 times to Penn's 27 victories. The Big Red have won every year since 1990. Last year was one of four occasions in that span where there was not a race.
Last year in this race, No. 2 Harvard, a guest, finished first. But Cornell, ranked No. 3 in the nation, was forced to forfeit and did not attend the race on the Schuylkill River.
The last trip to Ithaca, N.Y., was one for the ages. The Quakers nearly claimed their first Matthews-Leonard Cup in two decades, but the officials reviewed a photo finish and Cornell was declared the victor.
No. 9 Penn will have some momentum heading into the opening cup race. The Quakers started their season last Saturday on the Schuylkill River with six wins in seven races. The varsity defeated Delaware and Saint Joseph's, while the freshmen also posted two victories.
A full recap of the Matthews-Leonard Cup races can be found at PennAthletics.com following the conclusion of the day's races.
Tentative Race Schedule
2 - Smith, TJ
6 - Nuckols, Hurst
Stroke - Fisher, Mike
Cox - Nucci, Dominic
4 - Mihalich, Nico
5 - Shepherd, Sam
7 - Shaw, Sam
Bow- Ogiony, Emmet
7 - Miller, Adam
Stroke - David, Jacque
6 - Farrel, Ryan
Cox - Ramos, Josh