OSU Advances All Three Boats To IRA Semifinals

May 29, 2003

CAMDEN, N.J. - -

The No. 8 Oregon State varsity, junior varsity, and novice eights all advanced to the semifinals at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association National Championships on Thursday.

The three boats now need to finish among the top three in their respective semifinals on Friday to advance to Saturday's Grand Finals at the 2,000-meter Cooper River course.

In OSU's varsity eight repechage, the top three boats were separated by a total of 0.38 seconds - or roughly one seat.

Needing to finish in the top two in its repechage to advance to the semifinals, OSU crossed the line in five minutes, 48.58 seconds to edge No. 12 Princeton, which finished third, by 0.17 seconds. Seventh-ranked Brown squeaked past OSU to win the repechage in 5:48.37.

None of the three boats were separated by more than a foot throughout the race, according to OSU coach Kjell Oswald.

'We knew going into the repechage that it was going to be a barnburner. All the boats came off the blocks trying to win it in the first 500 meters,' Oswald said. 'I think our guys wanted a little revenge against Princeton for the dual meet earlier in the year. I think this is the first time in eight years that Princeton hasn't been in the semifinals.

'I think most people were pretty sure that Brown had won, but no one really knew who was second until the times came out.

'I've never been to this race before where all the coaches look nervous,' Oswald said. 'No one really knows where they're going to finish - the top crews think they could be first, or they could be fourth. The rest of the crews think they could be fifth, or they could be 16th, it's just hard to tell.'

OSU's JV finished second in its repechage with a time of 5:58.47, just under three seconds off Princeton's pace of 5:55.69. OSU topped third-place Navy by over three seconds.

At the 1,000-meter mark, OSU trailed Princeton by a length and Navy by four seats, but caught Navy with 30 strokes to go and rowed through to capture second.

'The JV knew they needed to row a more aggressive piece in the afternoon,' Oswald said. 'This was the best they've raced this year - not the best they've rowed, but the best they've raced. They usually have a strong first 1,000 meters, but they finished well today.'

OSU's novice eight rowed to a time of 6:06.42 to finish second, less than seven seconds back of Washington and four seconds better than third-place Harvard 'B'.

'The freshmen rowed a much better race in the afternoon,' Oswald said. 'I think they still have a lot of speed to tap into; they've been doing all they need to to get by, and so far, it's worked for them. They've set themselves up as a definite possibility for the Grand Finals.'

The varsity, JV and novice eights each rowed in heat races Thursday morning, the winner of which advanced directly to the semifinals on Friday. The remaining five boats rowed in one of four repechages.

In the heat races, OSU's varsity eight was third (5:50.56), the JV fourth (6:02.2), and the novice third (6:01.39).


Varsity 8 - Heat 1: 1. Harvard 5:40.58; 2. Northeastern 5:48.38; 3. Oregon State 5:50.56; 4. Temple 5:52.13; 5. Cornell 5:53.05; 6. Penn 5:55.96.

Varsity 8 - Repechage 4: 1. Brown 5:48.37; 2. Oregon State 5:48.58; 3. Princeton 5:48.75; 4. Dowling 6:08.54; 5. Virginia 6:08.94.

2nd Varsity 8 - Heat 3: 1. Harvard 5:53.40; 2. Cal-Davis 5:57.17; 3. Michigan 6:01.39; 4. Oregon State 6:02.2; 5. Dartmouth 6:16.55; 6. Virginia 6:22.55.

2nd Varsity 8 - Repechage 1: 1. Princeton 5:55.69; 2. Oregon State 5:58.47; 3. Navy 6:01.53; 4. Minnesota 6:07.4; 5. MIT 6:09.41.

Novice 8 - Heat 2: 1. Harvard 'A' 5:53.69; 2. Yale 5:56.95; 3. Oregon State 6:01.39; 4. St. Joseph's 6:01.92; 5. Syracuse 6:09.54; 6. Purdue 6:12.44.

Novice 8 - Repechage 1: 1. Washington 5:59.94; 2. Oregon State 6:06.42; 3. Harvard 'B' 6:10.44; 4. Northeastern 6:20.25; 5. North Carolina 6:28.27.

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