It was an indication that this would be Drexel's day at the 75th annual Dad Vail Regatta when one winning unit had to momentarily stop celebrating to cheer for another.

The members of the Dragons' men's novice heavyweight eight were being presented their gold medals at the victory stand near the finish line when the rowers turned to their left and began cheering for Drexel's women's junior varsity eight, which also captured first place.

"It's unbelievable to be celebrating for the guys and then seeing the girls win right by us," said Drexel men's and women's rowing coach Paul Savell.

Drexel did a lot of celebrating on a day when the sun and rain took turns bathing the area.

Performing before a large contingent of blue-and-gold-clad fans, Drexel won the overall point total for the first time in school history. Drexel placed second overall last year, two points behind Purdue.

The overall total consists of the points accumulated by the men's and women's teams.

Drexel had 45 points, with Grand Valley State University (33) second, and Bucknell and Michigan (26 each) tied for third.

In addition, Drexel won the men's title with 30 points, with Michigan (26) second and Virginia (21) third.

Grand Valley State, coached by Atlantic City graduate John Bancheri, won the women's title with 24 points, with a major boost coming from winning the women's varsity eight.

Bucknell was the women's runner-up with 21 points and Drexel and Massachusetts were tied for third with 15 points.

In another local note, Temple finished tied for 10th overall with 16 points.

The Dragons won four races. The other two victories were the prestigious men's heavyweight eight and men's varsity pair.

In addition, Drexel placed second in the men's JV heavyweight eight and earned a bronze in the women's varsity four. The Dragons also earned points by finishing fifth in women's novice eight and fifth in men's varsity lightweight four.

The Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta is the biggest collegiate rowing event in North America, with 127 schools, and for a team that practices every day on the Schuylkill, winning the event carried an even deeper meaning for the Dragons.

"It feels great," said Elise Levito, a sophomore from Villa Maria Academy and a member of the gold-medal-winning JV eight boat. "We are representing the whole area, it's where I grew up, and it's a great feeling."

If the crowd needed any more to be get excited about, the cheering went to a new level when Drexel won the prestigious men's heavyweight eight, claiming the 2,000-meter race in 5 minutes, 42.605 seconds. Michigan State was second (5:44.659).

"I couldn't be more proud of the guys," said senior captain Kurt Linton, one of four members of the boat from St. Augustine Prep in Richland, N.J. "There were nine guys motivating each other. It's thrilling knowing we finished off this way."

The Dragons clinched the men's title by winning the varsity pair, with Tim Drake, a senior from Holy Spirit, and Cameron Staines, a sophomore from Radnor, in the winning boat.

They edged Rochester, 7:03.697 to 7:03.789.

Because of the weather conditions, the singles and pairs were postponed until the end of the meet.

"Those two were sixth with 500 [meters] to go and were able to charge through and win it," Savell said. "It was unbelievable and almost like they knew everything was riding on that race."

Drexel gave an indication of its dominance by advancing all 12 boats from Friday into Saturday's competition. Nine of Drexel's 12 boats advanced to the afternoon finals.

"We see this course every day and talked about this from September through winter training," Savell said. "To have a day like this is pretty amazing for our team."