The Stony Brook University Sailing Team was upgraded in their conference at the annual meeting of the Middle Atlantic Intercollegiate Sailing Association (MAISA) on December 7, 2013.   MAISA is the regional conference of the Inter Collegiate Sailing Association (ICSA), the national governing authority for intercollegiate sailing competition in the United States and Canada.

The upgrade from “associate” to “provisional” status came as the sailing team finishes up its third successful season of competition where its progress has been tracked by MAISA who voted to approve the Seawolves  to compete for the ICSA Regional and National Championships effective for the Spring 2014 Season.

Said team coach Geoff Loffredo, “The upgrade in the conference represents several years of hard work.  Our initial status was the entry level status where we are allowed to participate in competition, but we had no voting rights in the conference and were not allowed to compete for the regional or national championships.  Now, we are looking forward to next season and our goal is to qualify for Regionals.  We’ve come a long way in three years.”

The team has indeed come a long way.  The team’s membership and status on campus has been growing as well.  The team did not exist in 2010, had no assets, no fleet and no home yacht club to host regattas and practices. Today, thanks to team fundraising and the Undergraduate Student Government (USG),  the team is hosted by the Setauket Yacht Club (SYC) where events and practices are held on Port Jefferson Harbor;  has a fleet of eleven 420 Club racing sailboats;  and team members who are now winning races in intercollegiate regattas.   Varsity squad members Heather Grosso, Cody Murphy, Constantine Spentzos and team president Zachary Kyritsis have all had first-place wins in intercollegiate competitions this past season and all have won the team’s “Outstanding Sailor Award” for 2013.

“The upgrade in the conference now also allows us to host a regatta where college and university teams from all over the country will come and compete at Stony Brook”, said faculty advisor Jason Rose, a lecturer in the Political Science Department.  “We’re hoping to host our first intercollegiate MAISA regatta next season in Port Jeff Harbor to be called the ‘Stony Brook Cup.'”

Said Kyritsis, “This was great news and it’s due to the commitment of our great team members, our coach and the invaluable help of USG, Marie Turchiano in Club Sports and the great folks at the Setauket Yacht Club.  We couldn’t have gotten here without them!”

The Sailing Team meets on Monday nights in SAC at 7pm where coach Loffredo gives classroom instruction on sailing and team racing.  The team welcomes all experience levels  to attend meetings and practices – from never having been in a boat, to seasoned sailors and racers. Practices are announced on the team’s Facebook page at  www.facebook.com/groups/sbusailing

Stony Brook will be moving up conferences after only three seasons of existence. Photo Courtesy of Stony Brook Sailing

Stony Brook will be moving up conferences after only three seasons of existence. Photo Courtesy of Stony Brook Sailing