UW Men's Varsity 8 Posts Best Semifinal Time at IRA Championships

May 30, 2003

CAMDEN, N.J. --The second-ranked Washington varsity eight clocked the fastest semifinal time Friday and the other three Husky crews all advanced into tomorrow's Grand Finals at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) men's national championships on the Cooper River.

Due to anticipated inclement weather in the Northeast, Saturday's schedule has been altered. All of the races have been moved earlier, including the varsity eight Grand Final which is slated for 7:36 a.m. Eastern Time (4:36 a.m. PDT). That is six hours earlier than the originally-scheduled championship race.

The varsity eight race should be a tightly-contested affair. The field includes the two semifinal race victors, Washington and Harvard. Their respective winning times were within .11-second of each other. The Crimson are top-ranked and undefeated while the Pac-10 champion Huskies are No. 2.

The Huskies won their last national championship in 1997, which is also the last time they won the conference title prior to this year. The Huskies earned the bronze medal at the 2002 nationals. California enters the Grand Final as the four-time defending champion. Also in the hunt for the gold is No. 3 Wisconsin, last year's national runner-up and a winner over the Huskies on April 19 during a dual race in Madison.

Washington went wire-to-wire in Friday's semifinal to win by a boat length and record a time of 5:39.71. Northeastern placed second in 5:42.52 and Cornell was third at 5:42.73. Harvard won the other semifinal in 5:39.82 followed by California in 5:42.98 and Wisconsin in 5:44.18.

'The varsity more or less controlled it right from the start. They did what they needed to do,' Husky coach Bob Ernst said of his top crew. 'They are moving the boat really fast right now and I think they've got a good shot at it.'

The second varsity (junior varsity) gave up second place, and almost a Grand Final position, after gaining open water over the majority of the field early in the race. Pac-10 rivals California and Washington were running one-two at the midway point, owning a five-second lead on the field. At the 1,000-meter mark they both slowed to conserve energy for Saturday's race, enabling Oregon State and Stanford to close the gap. The leaders picked up the pace, but not before the Beavers slid into second place. The Huskies finished ahead of Stanford to earn the third, and final, berth into the championship race.

California won the second varsity semifinal in 5:48.21 followed by Oregon State in 5:50.96, Washington in 5:51.08 and Stanford in 5:54.64. Harvard won the other semifinal race, edging Cornell.

The Huskies' freshman eight raced twice Thursday, advancing through the repechage in the afternoon to reach the semifinals. They placed third in Friday's semifinal competition, securing a Grand Final berth by over two boat lengths over Yale. Washington won the last two national championships in the freshman eight event.

Princeton posted a winning time of 5:46.1 in the semifinal followed by Brown in 5:49.71 and Washington in 5:51.3. Yale's fourth-place time was 5:59.01. California won the other semifinal with a mark of 5:41.95.

Washington's varsity four also advanced into the Grand Finals with a third-place semifinal performance. The Huskies' time of 6:28.69 was bettered only by California's 6:25.38 and the 6:27.92 of Columbia. North Carolina was the winner of the other varsity four semifinal race.

(team listed by lane assignment, Nos. 1-6)

7:36 a.m. EDT (4:36 a.m. PDT)
Varsity Eight
Wisconsin, California, Washington, Harvard, Northeastern, Cornell.

8:12 a.m. EDT (5:12 a.m. PDT)
Second Varsity Eight

Washington, Oregon State, Harvard, California, Cornell, Wisconsin.

8:48 a.m. EDT (5:48 a.m. PDT)
Freshman Eight

Harvard, Wisconsin, California, Princeton, Brown, Washington.

9:12 a.m. EDT (6:12 a.m. PDT)
Varsity Four

Harvard, Wisconsin, North Carolina, California, Columbia, Washington.

May 30, 2003
Cooper River; Camden, N.J.
(all races 2,000 meters / top three finishers in each semfinal to Grand Final)

Semifinal I
1, Harvard 5:39.82. 2, California 5:42.98. 3, Wisconsin 5:44.18. 4, Brown 5:45.66. 5, Temple 5:51.38. 6, Rutgers 5:58.65.

Semifinal II
1, 1, Washington 5:39.71. 2, Northeastern 5:42.52. 3, Cornell 5:42.73. 4, Navy 5:43.19. 5, Oregon State 5:48.26.
UW lineup: cox- Ryan Marks, stroke- Ante Kusurin, 7- John Lorton, 6- Marko Petrovic, 5- Brett Newlin, 4- Giuseppe Lanzone, 3- Kyle Larson, 2- Sam Burns, bow- Andy Derrick.

Semifinal I

1, Harvard 5:45.19. 2, Cornell 5:45.74. 3, Wisconsin 5:49.57. 4, Princeton 5:52.16. 5, Michigan 5:57.22. 6, Penn 6:07.69.

Semifinal II
1, California 5:48.21. 2, Oregon State 5:50.96. 3, Washington 5:51.08. 4, Stanford 5:54.64. 5, UC Davis 5:57.29. 6, Yale 5:59.71.
UW lineup: cox- Chris O'Brien, stroke- Ian Sawyer, 7- Dusan Nikolic, 6- Scott Gault, 5- Gints Salaks, 4- Charles Minett, 3- John Taylor, 2- Seth Berling, bow- Matt Kopicky.

Semifinal I

1, North Carolina 6:24.77. 2, Wisconsin 6:28.93. 3, Harvard 6:29.71. 4, San Diego State 6:31.09. 5, Temple 6:32.55. 6, Grand Valley State 6:40.03.

Semifinal II
1, California 6:25.38. 2, Columbia 6:27.92. 3, Washington 6:28.69. 4, St. Joseph's 6:32.05. 5, Purdue 6:35.39. 6, Michigan 6:56.87
UW lineup: cox- Melissa Wengard, stroke- Jeff Jorgensen, 3- John Kenfield, 2- Ben Fletcher, bow- Evan Galloway.

Semifinal I

1, California 5:41.95. 2, Wisconsin 5:44.43. 3, Harvard 5:45.37. 4, Cornell 5:45.78. 5, Oregon State 5:48.54. 6, Purdue 6:08.18.

Semifinal II
1, Princeton 5:46.1. 2, Brown 5.49.71. 3, Washington 5:51.3. 4, Yale 5:59.01. 5, UC Davis 6:00.41. 6, Penn 6:02.04.
UW lineup: cox- Adrian Andrews, stroke- Colin Phillips, 7- Daniel Harm, 6- Cooper Rooks, 5- Brodie Buckland, 4- Scott Schmidt, 3- Adam Van Winkle, 2- Craig Tyler, bow- Tyler Smith.

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