Stanford's I And II Eights Advance To NCAA Grand Finals
May 29, 2010
GOLD RIVER, Calif. - Stanford women's rowing sent two boats, its I and II Eights, to their respective NCAA Grand Finals in Saturday's action at the NCAA Championships on the waters of Lake Natoma, while the Four just missed out on a finals berth and will row in Sunday's petite final.
The I Eight will go for a repeat NCAA gold medal in the Grand Final Sunday afternoon at 12:05 p.m., while the II Eight, after earning NCAA bronze last year, will attempt the double Sunday as it goes for NCAA gold to match its Pac-10 gold medal earned two weeks ago. The II Eight Grand Final is set to get off at 11:15 a.m. The Four petite final is set for 10:05 a.m.
The I Eight, needing just to finish in the top three of the second semifinal Saturday morning, sat in second place after the first 500 meters, behind Princeton. The Cardinal spent much of the rest of the race jostling for second place with USC, as Princeton maintained a lead of about a second and a half the entire way. Despite being in third place by a narrow margin at the halfway point, Stanford pushed ahead of the Women of Troy and took second in the semifinal, crossing the line 1.36 seconds behind Princeton with a final time of 6:20.12.
Yale, winner of the first semifinal, turned in the fastest I Eight semifinal time, crossing the line in 6:16.54.
In the II Eight competition, Stanford led by just under a second after the opening 500 meters, and continued to build the lead while going wire-to-wire for the win. The Cardinal, which finished in 6:28.94, claimed the second-fastest time in its class, 1.10 seconds behind Brown, which won the first semifinal.
Stanford's Four, though, would just miss out on a Grand Final berth of its own in the late morning. Needing a top-three finish in the six-boat semifinal, the Cardinal were in fifth place, just 0.77 of a second out of third position after the opening 500 meters. Stanford would fight past Yale and into fourth place by the halfway mark, but it could not catch third-place Brown, which held off the Cardinal over the remaining 1,500 meters. Stanford would cross the line with a time of 7:21.36, just over a boatlength behind Brown, which finished third in 7:17.73.