Men’s Crew: Rowing sends two to Beijing

By Nate Owen

The Northeastern men’s crew team has carved out quite a niche in the Summer Olympics during the past four decades. This year will further cement that, as two NU competitors go to Beijing.

Northeastern alumnus Dan Walsh and senior Marshall Godschalk will row in the upcoming Summer Olympics, continuing a tradition in which Northeastern has placed a male rower or coach in every summer Olympics since 1972.

Godschalk will be representing the Netherlands in Beijing. He will be rowing in the three seat in the Olympic lightweight four without the coxswain. There are only six seats in Olympic lightweight rowing, as compared with the normal eight seats in a boat.

‘I am very excited to compete at the Olympic games. I set this goal for myself four years ago, and my entire life has been focused on the Olympic games,’ he said in an e-mail from South Korea, where he is training for Beijing. ‘Everything I always did for the past four years had the Olympics in mind.’

Godschalk, a business major concentrating in management and finance, rowed for Northeastern from 2004 to 2007. He took this past year off from school and will have one more semester of classes to complete before he graduates.

He said his experience at Northeastern rowing was a ‘once in a lifetime experience.’

‘I was on the varsity team for three years. Coach John Pojednic has taught me a lot, but the biggest thing is that anything is possible by working hard,’ he said in the e-mail. ‘I learned a lot from dedication, commitment and suffering. I think that anyone who rowed for Northeastern for four years can go on in life and be successful in anything they want.’

Godschalk said he trains seven days a week, rowing for two hour sessions on the water twice a day before two lift sessions. When he’s not rowing, he is usually resting and working on keeping his weight down, since he is a lightweight rower, he said.

He will be rowing in the two kilometer race, which generally takes about six minutes.

Walsh, a 2002 graduate and Norwalk, Conn. native was an alternate for the US gold medal eight-man crew team at the 2004 summer games in Athens. He is an eight-year member of the US National Senior team and finished second in pairs rowing at the 2004 Olympic trials. In 2006, he won the bronze medal in the World Championship and finished fourth in 2007 in the men’s eight.

During his time on the Charles River for Northeastern, Walsh was one of the nation’s top rowers. He received the Parker Award for outstanding freshman in 1998 and went on to win Outstanding Varsity Oarsman in 1999. He rowed for the Norwalk River Rowing Club prior to Northeastern. ‘

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