WEST WINDSOR, N.J. – Unprecedented.
Washington's men's rowing program took home three gold medals, plus a silver and a bronze, winning a fourth straight national championship in the varsity 8 at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association regatta. The Huskies also grabbed national championships in the MV4+ and MF8+ while earning a eighth consecutive Jim Ten Eyck trophy as the overall points champion.
The Huskies' fourth straight national title in the men's varsity eight was their 17th overall. Since 1895, the first year the IRAs were held, only three programs have won four straight.
The Huskies' Stewards Cup victory in the freshman eight race was their third straight and 23rd ever.
Washington won the Eric W. Will Trophy by taking the varsity four championship. That's the fifth straight for the Dawgs and their eighth since the trophy was first awarded in 1968.
Finally, Washington won the Ten Eyck for an unprecedented eighth straight season and a record 12th time overall.
In the MV8+ grand final, the feature race of the day, Washington went out fast and used strong moves at the 400- and 900-meter marks to overcome main rival California, which had beaten the UW Saturday in the semi-final.
Cal, which had come out fast in each of its three previous varsity eight races against the UW this spring, couldn't stay with the Huskies Sunday and eventually fell back to a third-place finish, with Brown taking the silver.
"Cal's a team that starts really fast and puts a lot of pressure on us and tries to control the race," said head coach Michael Callahan. "We wanted to get on terms with them really early. We've had some explosive moments in our practices, and we saved it up for the last day.
"This was our last card to play," Callahan continued. "We were generally running even or from behind and today we put out a little bit different race tactic. The guys nailed it."
The UW eight, which featured five new rowers and a new coxswain since last year's win, won the race with a time of 5:37.113. Brown was second with 5:39.626 and Cal was third in a time of 5:42.626. Princeton, Harvard and Yale rounded out the six-team grand final.
The Huskies' varsity four boat got the day started with its win. The Huskies broke out to an early lead over Cal and Brown in a tightly-packed start, but drew away around late in the first half of the race. Brown charged past Cal and into second, but couldn't catch the Huskies, who crossed the line a full length ahead in a time of 6:21.322 to Brown's 6:24.619.
In the first-ever running of a third varsity eight final, Washington finished a close second to California. The Bears finished in 5:47.554, about six seats ahead of Washington, which crossed the line in 5:49.750. Cal took the lead from nearly the start of the race and then held off the Huskies the rest of the way.
Washington came back 20 minutes later to take the freshman eight race, in one of the widest margins of the day. The Huskies won by open water, nearly six seconds ahead of the Golden Bears in a time of 5:46.324.
The Bears fought back to win their second race of the day in the M2V8+ final. Cal emerged from a tightly-packed field to surge past both Washington and Princeton, which edged the Huskies for second, to win. Washington's 5:46.282 was less than a second behind the runner-up Tigers while Cal won with a time of 5:42.880.
" I think (assistant coaches) Rick Gherst, Niles Garratt and Max Weaver did an amazing job," Coach Callahan said. "I think there are five guys who are going to graduate from this group, so there are a lot of underclassmen and a lot of development going on.
"Losing in those events isn't always unhealthy for this team or for the regatta," Callahan explained. "I think our expectations are so high that some of those guys might feel a little disappointed right now. I told them, 'I'm proud of you. You won a medal here at the national championship and there are so many students here who would want to be in your position.' I'm super proud of them. "
SUNDAY'S GRAND FINAL RESULTS
Men's Varsity 8+
1, Washington, 5:37.113; 2, Brown, 5:39.626; 3, California, 5:42.063; 4, Princeton, 5:43.715; 5, Harvard, 5:45.389; 6, Yale, 5:51.754.
UW Lineup: Cox - Stuart Sim; Stroke - Grega Domanjko; 7 - Sam Dommer; 6 - Finn Schroeder; 5 - Henry Meek; 4 - Julian Svoboda; 3 - Marcus Bowyer; 2 - Sam Dawson; Bow - Myles Neary.
Men's Second Varsity 8+
1, California, 5:42.880; 2, Princeton, 5:45.133; 3, Washington, 5:46.282; 4, Brown, 5:48.470; 5, Northeastern, 5:51.269; 6, Navy, 5:54.403.
UW Lineup: Cox - Lisa Caldwell; Stroke - Jacob Morton; 7 - Eric Ledbetter; 6 - Michael Evans; 5 - Sebastian Peter; 4 - Aleksander Malowany; 3 - Matthew Milner; 2 - Alexander Perkins; Bow - Michael Trebilcock.
Men's Third Varsity 8+
1, California 5:47.554; 2, Washington, 5:49.750; 3, Brown, 5:50.794; 4, Northeastern, 5:53.282; 5, Boston University, 5:54.804; 6, Princeton, 6:04.807.
UW Lineup: Cox - Parker Ksidakis; Stroke - Jackson Parma; 7 - Michael Thornton; 6 - Edward Nainby-Luxmore; 5 - Sam Helms; 4 - Nicolas Cypro; 3 - Sean Raffetto; 2 - Will Lytle; Bow - Zachary Hershberger.
Men's Freshman 8+
1, Washington, 5:46.324; 2, California, 5:52.105; 3, Brown, 5:54.086; 4, Harvard, 5:55.150; 5, Wisconsin, 5:56.993; 6, Cornell, 5:57.550.
UW Lineup: Cox - Lia Roberds; Stroke - Jernej Markovc; 7 - Pietro Zileri Dal Verme; 6 - Kieran O'Sullivan; 5 - Ivan Piton; 4 - Jake Zier; 3 - Vuk Matovic; 2 - Guglielmo Carcano; Bow - Charles Gardner.
Men's Varsity 4+
1, Washington, 6:21.322; 2, Brown, 6:24.619; 3, California, 6:27.615; 4, Boston University, 6:29.551; 5, Georgetown, 6:33.241; 6, Wisconsin, 6:41.965.
UW Lineup: Cox - Joshua Klein; Stroke - James Erving; 3 - Matthew Medalia; 2 - Evan Hargreaves; Bow - Harrison King.