March 28, 2000
PULLMAN, Wash. -- The 21st-ranked WSU women's rowing team, coming off last week's upset of Victoria and No. 17 Oregon State, gets its shot at the top teams in the nation at the San Diego Crew Classic April 1-2?the Varsity Eight, Second Varsity Eight and First Novice Eight will row in San Diego, while the Second Novice Eight boat will travel to Seattle for the Husky Invitational.
San Diego Crew Classic
Saturday, April 1-Sunday April 2, Mission Bay, Calif.
April 1 - Preliminaries
8:20 a.m.-- Varsity Eight-- No. 2 Virginia, No. 4 USC, No. 6 Michigan, No. 21 WSU, No. 24 San Diego State, Duke
Heat one -- top three finishers advance to Sunday's final (Whittier Cup)
10:20 a.m.-- Second Varsity Eight-- Michigan State, Clemson, Virginia, Orange Coast, UC Davis, WSU
Heat three -- top two finishers advance to Sunday's final
11:30 a.m.-- First Novice Eight-- UC San Diego-A, Michigan, UC Irvine, Oregon State, WSU, Southern Methodist-B
Heat three -- top two finishers advance to Sunday's final
April 2 - Championship/Consolation Finals -- Opponents TBA
Saturday, April 1, Seattle, Wash. (Montlake Cut) Time Race Teams 7:20 a.m. Second Novice Eight Washington, WSU, Puget Sound, Everett CC
WSU at the San Diego Crew Classic? The Cougars are looking to advance to Sunday's Whittier Cup Grand Final (Varsity Eight championship race) for the first time since 1997?it will not be an easy task to advance with three of the nation's top six teams -- No. 2 Virginia, No. 4 USC and No. 6 Michigan -- all in the Cougars' Saturday heat?only the top three boats advance to Sunday's final?last year, WSU struggled through a rough day of preliminary races to capture first place in the consolation race?the Cougars' best finish at the San Diego Crew Classic came in 1995 when they were second to Washington?Saturday's other qualifying heat features No. 3 California, No. 4 Washington, No. 8 Michigan State, No. 9 Wisconsin and No. 17 Oregon State?the San Diego Crew Classic is one of two regattas heavily relied upon by the NCAA to determine who receives invitations to the NCAA Championships May 26-28 in Camden, N.J?the other is the Pac-10 Championships, held May 14 at Lake Natoma, Calif.
Coach Crawford on the San Diego Crew Classic? "Our first goal is to get all three boats into the grand finals and then we want a top three finish in the finals. That's pretty challenging, but I think we can do it. In the Varsity Eight, we have a chance to show how fast we are against teams like Virginia and Michigan. We still have another gear in that boat and I think we can get Michigan, but we'll take anyone we can catch."
"The Second Varsity is going to be more of a challenge for us because we have some bodies out, but if everything clicks, we can do it. We're going to have to everything fall into place just right."
"In the Novice Eight, I expect Michigan and San Diego to be the most challenging for us. The Novice Eight boat is in a real strong position right now They beat Oregon State pretty easily last week and they won't be seeing many boats much faster than Oregon State this weekend."
Last Race Recap? The 21st-ranked Washington State women's rowing team won three out of five races, including a dramatic upset of both Victoria and No. 17 Oregon State in the Varsity Eight, under near-perfect racing conditions March 25 on the Snake River.
In the Varsity Eight, the day's feature race, WSU's boat covered the 2,000-meter course in a season-best time of 6:43.5, just .36 seconds ahead of Victoria's 6:43.86?Oregon State was third at 6:45.8?the Vikes, one of the top 10 programs in Canada, routed WSU by 23 seconds on a longer course last fall in Seattle and looked to be on their way to victory again after jumping out to an early half-length lead?but the Cougars pulled even at the 500-meter mark and the two boats stayed deadlocked throughout, neither being able to forge more than a one-meter lead?with 100 meters remaining, WSU made its final push and took the lead by a nose, but Victoria responded with a charge of its own and pulled even with the Cougars a mere five meters from the finish line?on their final stroke, the WSU eight mustered just enough momentum to slip past Victoria at the line, clipping the Vikes by three inches in the closest race ever at Wawawai Landing?Oregon State, ranked four spots higher than the Cougars in the coaches' poll, fell one length back after 500 meters, and from there stayed in contact with the leaders, but never challenged.
WSU also won an exciting five-boat Varsity Four race?two different Oregon State boats spent time at the front of the pack before WSU's "A" team took the lead for good 1,000 meters in?the Cougars opened up an open water lead in the last 500 meters and brought home the win in a time of 7:37.0?OSU's "A" team was next at 7:47.95, followed by WSU "B" (7:51.50), OSU "B" (7:53.65) and OSU "C" (7:54.93).
The day got off to a solid start for the Cougars with the First Novice Eight easily beating Oregon State by almost six seconds?WSU pulled ahead after the first 200 meters and cruised home in a time of 6:52.76, while the Beavers crossed the line at 6:58.52.
March 25, 2000
Snake River, Wawawai Landing, Wash.
Saturday, March 25, 2000
Calm, mostly sunny, 55 degrees
Varsity Eight - WSU 6:43.5, Victoria 6:43.86, OSU 6:45.8.
Second Varsity Eight - Victoria 6:44.07, OSU 6:47.32, WSU 6:55.42.
Novice Eight - WSU 6:52.76, OSU 6:58.52.
Second Novice Eight - OSU 7:08.20, WSU 7:20.09.
Varsity Four - WSU-A 7:37.0, OSU-A 7:47.95, WSU-B 7:51.50, OSU-B 7:53.65,
Spring vs. Fall Racing?The fall rowing season represents a different perspective of racing than that of the fast-paced and heavier promoted spring "conference" season?while fall races average over three miles in length, spring racing takes place over a 2,000 meter mapped-out coarse.
Cougar Rowing notes?For the first time, this season's spring schedule gave WSU rowers two races to prepare for this week's San Diego Crew Classic?the San Diego regatta features mixed Pac-10, Big 10 and eastern teams competition?results from this regatta greatly influence season polls, which will be released next week.
Ten years together?One thing has remained constant since women's rowing first became a varsity sport at WSU in 1990?entering their tenth year coaching together, Cougar coaches Tammy Crawford and Jodi Winchell have been committed and successful at transforming rowing at WSU into a nationally competitive program?Crawford is in her tenth season as the head coach of the WSU rowing team and 14th season of collegiate coaching?Winchell, Novice coach, begins her eighth year as a coach with the Cougars?Michelle Kistler also returns to WSU for her second consecutive year as an assistant coach.