June 1, 2003
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Harvard's victory in the varsity eight race clinched the team title for the Crimson while Washington finished third in the team standings after a fourth-place effort in the featured race Sunday during the final day of the NCAA Women's Rowing Championships at Eagle Creek.
Washington rowers collected the silver medal in the second varsity (junior varsity) competition and the Huskies were the first crew across the finish line in the Petite Final of the varsity four event to place seventh overall.
The third-place finish kept alive a streak that has seen three-time national champion Washington place among the top three in the team standings at all seven NCAA Championships. The Huskies were also third in 1999 and were national runners-up in 2000 and 2002.
The team champion was determined by a combination of results from each of the three events. Harvard was the only team to qualify a crew for all three Grand Final races. No team has won the NCAA team championship without an entry in every Grand Final.
The Crimson earned the team trophy in the closest contest ever, amassing 59 points. Runner-up Brown totaled 57 points, Washington had 55 and Michigan was fourth with 51.
Harvard became the first school other than Washington and Brown to win a team championship since the NCAA began sponsoring women's rowing in 1997. Washington (1997, 1998, 2001) and Brown (1999, 2000, 2002) have each won three team titles.
"It's been Brown and us since the NCAA started," Washington coach Jan Harville said. "I'd like it to continue that way, but you don't see too many other sports where it's just one or two teams forever. I see the standard going up and we are going to continue to aim to be at the top or near the top."
The Huskies were in position to win the team title entering the final race of the day, needing a top-two finish in the varsity eight event to secure the team trophy. They could also have won the championship with a third-place finish if Harvard's eight did not win.
The second-ranked Crimson eight made those scenarios moot with an impressive showing in the varsity eight race. The Grand Final proved to be the hotly contested battle that was expected after all six finalists finished within two seconds of each other during Saturday's semifinal races.
As has become customary at these championships, Washington burst out early and paced the field for the opening 500 meters. All six boats were running deck-to-deck before Harvard captured the lead near the midway point and controlled the race the rest of the way.
"It pretty much unfolded in a way that our races have this year," Harville described. "We have a lot of quickness and there are some crews with a lot of power out there. We've been working really hard on our middle thousand all year. We've made some improvement on it, but it's not our strength. Yesterday we were able to limit the moves of some of the other crews in the semis. We were aiming to do the same thing today and obviously Harvard was aiming to make a bigger push right there."
The Huskies dropped back to fifth place in the tight pack at the 1,000-meter mark. UW moved into fourth place at 1,500 meters and their sprint over the final 500 nearly enabled them to overtake third-place Stanford.
"I was hoping for better than fourth, but I really think that we went out there and raced our hearts out" senior coxswain Anne Hessburg remarked. "We raced our race and I'm really proud of what we did. It was an amazing race. There were six boats across and there was some real talent out there."
Harvard's winning time over the 2,000-meter course was 6-minutes, 26.92-seconds. Michigan finished second in 6:28.58, followed by Stanford in 6:29.54, Washington in 6:30.07, Virginia in 6:31.49 and USC in 6:38.33.
"We're disappointed in the final result, but at the same time when your crew goes out there and leaves it out on the water and does the best that they can it's kind of hard to be terribly disappointed," said Harville. "That's what sports is about."
Washington's best result came in the second varsity Grand Finals. After opening an early lead, UW was overtaken by Brown halfway through the race. The Bears broke away from the field and posted an open-water victory with a time of 6:35.03. Washington clocked a 6:38.57 followed by California in 6:39.67.
The Huskies narrowly missed qualifying for the varsity four Grand Final with a third-place repechage result Saturday. They took their frustration out on the petite finalists. Washington owned a narrow margin through 500 meters, but gave up a seat to Michigan State and ran in the second over the next 1,000. A strong sprint gave UW the lead and a Petite Final victory with a winning time of 7:38.02. Virginia placed second in 7:39.05.
NCAA WOMEN'S ROWING CHAMPIONSHIPS
Sunday, June 1, 2003
Eagle Creek / Indianapolis, Ind.
Final Team Standings
1. Harvard 59
2. Brown 57 3. Washington 55 4. Michigan 51
5. California 43
6. Virginia 41
7. Princeton 38
8. Ohio State 38
9. Stanford 33
10. Yale 27
11. Michigan State 16
12. Washington State 10
Championship Race Results
1. Harvard 6:26.92UW lineup: cox- Anne Hessburg, stroke- Lauren Estevenin, 7- Carrie Stasiak, 6- Adrienne Hunter, 5- Heidi Hurn, 4- Jessica Harm, 3- Erin Curry, 2- Mary Reeves, bow- Yvonneke Stenken.
2. Michigan 6:28.58
3. Stanford 6:29.54 4. Washington 6:30.07 5. Virginia 6:31.49
6. USC 6:38.33
1. Brown 6:20.01
2. Princeton 6:23.48
3. Ohio State 6:23.95
4. California 6:24.97
5. Yale 6:26.13
6. Texas 6:28.65
SECOND VARSITY EIGHT
1. Brown 6:35.03 2. Washington 6:38.57 3. California 6:39.67UW lineup: cox- Megan Mach, stroke- Sanda Hangan, 7- Courtney Matson, 6- Alina Tabacaru, 5- Amanda Jensen, 4- Margaret Henry, 3- Gemma Edward-Aron, 2- Signe Johannes, bow- Michael Kohan
4. Princeton 6:41.99
5. Harvard 6:42.43
6. Ohio State 6:43.80
1. Virginia 6:38.28
2. Yale 6:40.05
3. Michigan 6:40.32
4. Michigan State 6:40.92
5. Washington State 6:43.58
6. Stanford 6:45.60
1. Brown 7:18.83
2. California 7:21.43
3. Michigan 7:24.83
4. Ohio State 7:30.02
5. Yale 7:32.51
6. Harvard 7:34.79
1. Washington 7:38.02 2. Virginia 7:39.05UW lineup: cox- Dana Ryan, stroke- Lindsay Schwarz, 3- Nicole Mazikowski, 2- Katherine Ramos, bow- Lisa Krikava.
3. Michigan State 7:40.01
4. Washington State 7:43.04
5. Princeton 7:45.09
6. Stanford 7:56.00