The Washington women’s rowing team continued its quest to retain the NCAA championship Saturday morning in Sarasota, Fla., sending all three crews into Sunday’s grand finals, starting at 7 a.m. Pacific time.
Needing a top-three finish in each semifinal to advance to the grands, Washington finished first in its second varsity eight semifinal, while taking second in both the varsity eight and varsity four.
Washington was one of five programs to earn a spot in all three grand finals, alongside Texas, Stanford, Michigan and Virginia.
In the varsity eight, Washington led after 500 meters, but in the second 500, Stanford pulled in front. The Cardinal, which had given the Huskies their toughest race all year at Pac-12s (UW won that race), held off the Huskies, who had a clear path to the grand final by virtue of an open water lead over third-place Virginia.
Stanford won the race in 6 minutes, 8.504 seconds, five seats ahead of the Washington varsity (6:10.088)
Washington’s second varsity eight won its race in wire-to-wire fashion in 6:17.006, while Ohio State came from fourth place at 1,000 meters to take second. Michigan finished third, just a half-second behind its rival and less than two-tenths of a second in front of California.
Stanford took command of the varsity four race from the start, moving away from what began as a very tightly packed field to earn the win. Washington moved from third position behind Michigan and into second in the second 500 and earned a comfortable second in 6:58.751. Stanford’s time was 6:53.207.
Here is the schedule of grand finals at Nathan Benderson Park, along with a live video link:
7 a.m. PT – Varsity Four+, grand final
7:24 a.m. PT – Second Varsity Eight+, grand final
7:48 a.m. PT – Varsity Eight+, grand final