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With the Leonard Cup on the line, a photo finish was a fitting way to end the second race of the year for the Penn men’s lightweight rowing team.

The Quakers were 0.5 seconds short of victory over Cornell Saturday afternoon.

Harvard dominated the men’s lightweight meet in Ithaca, N.Y., but as an invited guest they were not eligible for the Matthews-Leonard Cup.

In the Varsity 8 race, the Quakers fell behind early, still trailing Cornell with 400 meters to go.

But Penn didn’t give up, closing within feet of the Big Red toward the finish line. After an official review, it was declared that Cornell had won the cup — by half a second. The cup has evaded Penn since 1990.

Meanwhile the men’s heavyweight team lost four of its five races at the Childs Cup in Orchard Beach, N.Y.

The Quakers’ heavyweight team didn’t quite come close enough for any photo finishes as their four losses to Columbia and Princeton were all by more decisive margins. Their only win was in the second Frosh Four race.

“We’ve obviously got room to improve,” heavyweight coach Greg Myhr said. “We need to get off to better starts in our races. It’s important to set yourself up well, early.”

No. 7 Princeton beat out No. 13 Columbia to earn the Cup .

Both Penn’s heavyweight and lightweight squads will host meets next Saturday, for the Blackwell Cup and Dodge Cup respectively.

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