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Rowers Head East for NCAA Championships
Release: 05/22/2000
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May 22, 2000

SEATTLE - This Week: The Washington women's rowing team makes a fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Championships, May 26-28 on the Cooper River in Camden, NJ. The Huskies were the top seed from the west region and earned an automatic berth to the regatta. This year marks the first time the women's championships will be held on the Cooper River. Husky men's crews have competed at the site since 1995, for the Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) Championships. The 2000 IRA is set for June 1-3.

About the Championships: The NCAA Championships are comprised of 10 teams and each team is required to field a varsity eight, second varsity (junior varsity) and a varsity four. In addition, nine eight-woman boats from institutions not represented in the team competition are selected. Along with Washington, the following nine schools earned team invitations: defending champion Brown, Boston U., California, Harvard, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Princeton and Virginia.

Washington at the NCAA Championships: The Huskies captured the first two team titles, in 1997 and '98, when the sport first became sanctioned by the NCAA. The '97 crown was Washington's first NCAA team title in any sport. Last year, Washington finished third in the team standings, behind Brown and Virginia.

Defending Champs: Washington's varsity four enters the regatta as defending NCAA champions, having won a gold medal in the grand final on Lake Natoma in Sacramento, Calif. last year. The boat was made up entirely of novice rowers as it captured Washington's first title in that event since pre-NCAA days in 1987. It will be the same again this year, as the '00 novice women, who are undefeated, compete for the title.

National Champion Huskies: Long before rowing became an NCAA Championship-sanctioned event, the Huskies were a fixture at the collegiate championships and collected several collegiate national titles. The first women's collegiate championship was contested in 1980 in Oak Ridge, Tenn. Washington won its first varsity eight title in 1981, the first of an unprecedented five straight varsity titles. They won back-to-back varsity gold medals in 1987 and '88 before earning it's first NCAA title in 1987. The Huskies made a clean sweep of the varsity and junior varsity eight and varsity four in 1987.

Here is a look at the years Washington crews won national titles:
Varsity Eight - 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1987*, 1988, 1997, 1998
Junior Varsity Eight - 1981, 1982, 1983, 1987*, 1989, 1994
Varsity Four - 1987*, 1999
* - swept all three races

About the Huskies: Washington's women's crews have lost just one race this season - the JV grand final at San Diego - between the varsity, junior varsity, novice eights and fours. After entering the season at No. 3 in the USRowing Coaches Poll, the varsity eight was the top ranked team in the nation, until last week, since the first week of competition April 1-2. Among crews earning NCAA team bids, the Huskies have already faced California, Michigan, Michigan State and Virginia. The JV loss in San Diego was to Virginia.

Huskies Win ... Drop in Polls: On the heels of a convincing victory at the Pac-10 Championships May 14, the Husky varsity eight dropped a notch to No. 2 in the USRowing Collegiate Coaches Poll for May 17. Brown, the preseason top pick, moved to the No. 1 slot. Following the San Diego Crew Classic April 2, the Huskies took over the No. 1 spot, where they remained until last week. The varsity eight has not lost a race this season.

Been There, Done That: Among the 23 Husky athletes competing in three different boats this weekend, 16 have been a part of NCAA Championship teams or boats during their UW careers. Six of those athletes have won gold medals in NCAA grand finals races. Here is a look at the individual winners and where they are now:

Name	     Gold medal boat (position)	         This year (position)
Erin Becht '99 varsity four (bow) junior varsity eight (5 seat)
Kara Nykreim '99 varsity four (3 seat) junior varsity eight (6 seat)
Anna Mickelson '99 varsity four (2 seat) varsity eight (4 seat)
Vanessa Tavalero '98 varsity eight (2 seat) varsity eight (5 seat)
Sabina Telenska '97, '98 varsity eight (stroke) varsity eight (stroke)
Mary Whipple '99 varsity four (cox) varsity eight (cox)

Here is a look at the student-athletes who competed at the 1997 and '98 NCAA Championships, when Washington won back-to-back titles: Noelle Anderson `98
Lindsey Horton `98
Sabina Telenska '97, '98
Nicole Borges '98
Rika Geyser '98
Vanessa Tavalero '97, '98
Lara Tilmanis `98
Theresa Nygren-Birkholz '97, '98
Nicole Rogers '98
Maggie Seay `98

Last Year: Washington entered the 1999 NCAA Championships (on Lake Natoma, in Sacramento, Calif.) as two-time defending champions and with the varsity eight carrying a 33-race win streak that dated back to 1996. A varsity eight had not lost a race in NCAA Championship history, including heat racing, semi-finals and grand finals. Brown won the varsity eight semi-final, with Washington in second, to snap the 33-race streak. Following that, the Huskies finished fifth in the grand final and the team went on to finish third. The Husky varsity four earned a gold medal and the second varsity finished fourth in its grand final.

Schedule of Events (the `draw' for heats takes place Wednesday, May 24 ... varsity eights are referred to as I Eights and junior varsity eights are II Eights ... repechage means `second chance' ... alll times are Eastern Standard)
Friday, May 26
8:00 a.m. Fours heat 1
8:20 a.m. Fours heat 2
8:40 a.m. II Eights heat 1
9:00 a.m. II Eights heat 2
9:20 a.m. I Eights heat 1 (6 lanes)
9:40 a.m. I Eights heat 2 (6 lanes)
10:00 a.m. I Eights heat 3 (7 lanes)
4:00 p.m. I Eights Repechage 1 (6 lanes)
4:20 p.m. I Eights Repechage 2 (7 lanes)

Saturday, May 27
10:00 a.m. Fours Repechage
10:20 a.m. II Eights Repechage
10:40 a.m. I Eights (places 13-19)
11:00 a.m. I Eights Semi-final 1
11:20 a.m. I Eights Semi-final 2

Sunday, May 28 (Petite Finals, 7-10 and Grande Finals 1-6)
10:00 a.m. Fours (seeds 7-12)
10:20 a.m. Fours (seeds 1-6)
10:40 a.m. II Eights (seeds 7-10)
11:00 a.m. II Eights (seeds 1-6)
11:20 a.m. I Eights (seeds 7-12)
11:40 a.m. I Eights (seeds 1-6)
12:15 p.m. Awards Ceremony

Probable Championship Lineups
I Varsity
cox: Mary Whipple (So., Sacramento, Calif.)
stroke: Sabina Telenska (Sr., Prague, Czech Republic)
7 - Nicole Borges (Jr., Mississauga, Ontario)
6 - Rika Geyser (Jr., Pretoria, South Africa)
5 - Vanessa Tavalero (Sr., Sacramento, Calif.)
4 - Anna Mickelson (So., Bellevue, Wash.)
3 - Lindsey Horton (Sr., Olympia, Wash.)
2 -- Theresa Nygren-Birkholz (Sr., Seattle, Wash.)
bow - Nicole Rogers (Jr., Larkspur, Calif.)

II Varsity
cox: Lara Tilmanis (Sr., Portland, Ore.)
stroke: Noelle Anderson (Jr., Marysville, Wash.)
7-Romany McNamara (Jr., San Francisco, Calif.)
6-Kara Nykreim (So., Tacoma, Wash.)
5-Erin Becht (So., Buffalo, NY)
4-Kim Oates (Sr., Tacoma, Wash.)
3-Jenni Vesnaver (So., Adelaide, Australia)
2-Leslie Rattan (Jr., Madison, Wisc.)
bow-Maggie Seay (Sr., Seattle, Wash.)

Varsity Four
cox: Anne Hessburg (Fr., Wenatchee, Wash.)
stroke: Lauren Estevenin (Fr., Meaux, France)
3 - Carrie Stasiak (Fr., St. Catharines, Ont.)
2 - Heidi Hurn (Fr., Redmond, Wash.)
bow - Adrienne Hunter (Fr., Toronto, Ont.)

Spares Alexa Helsell (So., Seattle, Wash.)
Mary Strazer (Sr., Portland, Ore.)

USRowing Collegiate Coaches Poll
May 17, 2000
1. Brown (7)
2. Washington (3)
3. California
4. Radcliffe
5. Princeton
6. Virginia
7. Michigan
8. Boston U.
9. Michigan State
10. Yale
11. Ohio State
12. Oregon State
13. Northeastern
14. Southern California
15. Syracuse
16. Dartmouth
17. Wisconsin
18t. Washington State
18t. Iowa
20. Kansas

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