On Saturday, May 21 2016, two Gonzaga College High School sports programs made history – one in Philadelphia, PA and the other in Charlotte, NC. Just before 5:30pm, Gonzaga’s V8 Crew rowed to a 5th straight Stotesbury Regatta Cup. And at about 6:45pm, Gonzaga’s Varsity Purple Rugby Eagles held on to defeat Jesuit (CA) to win its third consecutive National Championship. Watch Tribute videos below, and click the links to read coverage from the Washington Post.
Gonzaga is the first school in 75 years to win 5 straight Stotesbury Cup Regattas. The V8 Eagles remain undefeated on the season. Here is coverage from the Washington Post:
“With their Stotesbury Cup Regatta gold medals dangling from their necks, the Gonzaga boys’ varsity eight crew team spun away from the photographer stationed on the platform to face the grandstand overlooking the Schuylkill River on Saturday evening and began singing their alma mater.
Teammates clad in Eagles purple joined in, their cheers filling the air. Rowers and supporters of other schools stood in silence, forced to watch as Gonzaga christened its fifth straight Stotesbury victory.
The Eagles won the 1,500-meter race comfortably in 4 minutes 16.04 seconds. Jesuit College Prep from Dallas (4:18.50) and New Jersey’s Lawrenceville (4:18.70) earned second and third, respectively. St. Albans (4:19.94) placed fourth.”-WP
“Gonzaga becomes the first school to three-peat as national rugby champions” -WP. The video above highlights the semifinal win over Xavier (NY), 7-0; and the epic championship victory over Jesuit (CA), 7-6.
“We couldn’t accomplish this without the willingness to want to become better,” said Lopresti, who is one of three team captains. “We’ve challenged ourselves all regular season, playing against teams better than us or the same caliber. So when we played a man down for the last 10 minutes and even with the field conditions, we were able to overcome all those things and stick to our game plan.”
“The team accomplished something that had never been done before in 35 years of high school rugby national championships in the United States – a single school winning three straight championships. This time was the most challenging as we had to overcome some injuries to key players, rainy weather and absolutely miserable field conditions.” -Coach Baggetta