Rowing Qualifies All Three Boats For 2009 NCAA Championships Semifinals

May 29, 2009

After a tough day of racing at the 2009 NCAA Championships, No. 16 USC qualified all three boats for the semifinals and guaranteed itself a top 12 overall finish on Friday (May 29) at the Cooper River Park in Cherry Hill, N.J.

After struggling a bit in the morning heats, the Trojans rebounded in the afternoon reps, with excellent performances.

The Varsity 8, after placing fourth in the morning heat, came back to finish third in the afternoon repechage, enabling them to advance to the semifinal. The three qualifying boats of Ohio, Michigan and USC in the Varsity 8 repechage finished within .0.42 seconds of each other.

The top three finishers in each semifinal race will advance to the Grand Final, while the rest of the field will advance to the Petite Final. The semifinal races will go off on Saturday morning at 9 a.m. and 9:15 a.m.

In the Second Varsity 8, the Trojans put together a great race and placed second, just 0.68 seconds behind first-place Princeton to advance to the semifinals.

The Varsity Four had the final and most exciting race of the day. Due to a last minute health complication with a rower in the Varsity 8, the four boat's lineup was put together just two days before the race.

Despite having never having practiced or raced together, rowers Robin Hextrum, Nana Gagatsovi, Anna Janicka, Cassie Richardson, and coxswain Lisa Kolstad rose to the occasion. Turning in an inspiring performance in the afternoon, the Trojan quartet finished third in the repechage, responding on the last 250 meters to a strong challenge from Princeton.

All the results and the schedule of the Saturday semifinals can be found here.

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