Rowing Begins the 2021 Spring Season this Saturday against No. 1 Washington
LAS VEGAS – After a 490-day wait, the Washington State women's rowing team will return to the water for an NCAA competition this Saturday, March 6, as the Cougars open their 2021 spring schedule with a race against the defending NCAA champion Washington Huskies at Lake Las Vegas in Henderson, Nevada. Race time is set for 8 a.m. PT.
Washington State last competed in an NCAA race all the way back on Nov. 2, 2019, when the Cougs participated in the Silver Lake Head Race in Spokane, Washington. WSU will compete in three races on Saturday against UW, starting with the varsity four race kicking things off at 8 a.m. PT. The second varsity eight race will take place at 8:30 p.m. PT, while the first varsity eight will row 30 minutes after that to conclude the day. WSU will have one boat competing in each race against the Huskies on Saturday.
"To say the team is excited to race is an understatement," said WSU rowing head coach Jane LaRiviere. "It has been close to 500 days of uncertainty. We are so extremely happy to get the opportunity to race and end that uncertainty on Saturday. We have never raced this early in the spring season, but given the strange year and the lack of racing, it seemed like a no-brainer."
Saturday's race will kick-off the 18th season for Washington State under LaRiviere's direction. The head coach has led the Cougars to 12 NCAA Rowing Championships during her time on the Palouse. Her team returns 34 rowers from the 2019-20 squad, while welcoming in 22 newcomers into the program over the extended offseason.
"I can't wait to see the Cougs do their thing on Saturday," expressed LaRiviere. "We have 23 student-athletes down here, which includes 11 freshman and sophomores who will be competing in their first spring race for us. I expect we are going to learn a lot Saturday and that will help us focus our efforts in the coming weeks. Lake Las Vegas is a relatively-new rowing venue and it has all the attributes of a great race course. This weekend will also be great preparation for the Pac-12 Invitational, which is being hosted here in April."
Washington State opens the 2021 spring season ranked No. 19 in the preseason Pocock CRCA Poll, presented by US Rowing. The Pac-12 had seven teams featured in the preseason top-25 poll, with Washington coming in at No. 1 in the preseason poll after winning the 2019 NCAA Rowing Championship.
For the latest updates, go to the regatta's page on RegattaCentral.com. There will not be a live video stream.