You mentioned replenishing crew. This would have to be done in a very limited way. The entire point/ship lineup system depends somewhat on there not being any significant ability to repair damage. Regenerating shields are definitely something that you want to avoid completely. There are a lot of reasons for this relating to the point/ship lineup (BPV) system, but there is also a very important tactical reason that all of the Star Control fans have already experienced with the Mycon in the original Star Control games.
If you can heal and your opponent can't, then your optimal tactic becomes "refusal to engage". This, of course, is a big part of why the barrier exists (or why the original SC games had the wrap-around map). This is why the Mycon could barely move, and still you'll remember that even though you were so slow you actually spent all of your time trying to stay away from the enemy ship rather than trying to catch up too it. Paul, Fred, someone else on the team... somebody on the original Star Control team was an at least good SFB player and had a very good understanding of this stuff.
If my ship can heal itself, the longer I can stay away and alive the more "free ships" I can accumulate over time. Healing in any form is a very powerful thing within this system. It can easily break the entire system.