WEST WINDSOR, N.J. – California men’s crew claimed the national title in the second varsity eight and the third varsity eight during Sunday’s Grand Finals en route to a second-place team finish at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championship at Lake Mercer in West Windsor, N.J.
Cal totaled 188 team points, to finish just four shy of National Champion Washington. The Bears were 10 points ahead of third-place Brown (187 points).
“Overall, it was a good day,” California head men’s crew coach Mike Teti said. “We won 11 out of the 15 races at the national championships and everybody medaled. Everyone improved over last year and showed great effort. It was a great job by the junior varsity and third varsity. You have to be absolutely perfect to win a national championship. We came very close and I am proud of everyone.”
The Bears’ second varsity opened its race behind Princeton but quickly surged into the lead just 500 meters into the course. They continued their strong pace throughout the race, winning by three seconds over the Tigers, 5:42.880 – 5:45.133. Washington, who had its seven-year championship streak snapped in the event, finished third with a time of 5:46.282. It was the Bears’ first IRA title in the second varsity eight since 2003.
The varsity eight race saw the Bears open up an early advantage. The 750-meter mark of the race saw Cal and Washington racing toe-to-toe, before the Huskies pulled ahead. UW took a three-seat lead on Cal at 1,000 meters and began to pull away from the field, winning the title with a time of 537.113. Brown (5:39.626) made a late surge over the final 500 meters to claim second over the Bears (5:42.063). The third-place finish was Cal’s highest since also finishing third in the varsity eight race in 2011.
The third varsity claimed the Bears’ first IRA title of the day, racing down the course in 5:47.554 to record a two-second victory over Washington (5:49.750). Brown finished third with a time of 5:40.794).
Cal and Washington pulled ahead of the field early in the freshman eight and battled down the course. The Huskies began to open a length lead at the 1,000-meter mark and captured the race by open water with a time of 5:46.324 over the Bears time of 5:52.105.
In the day’s first race, the Cal varsity four placed third with a time of 6:21.322, behind Washington (6:21.322) and second-place Brown (6:24.619).
Top Three: 1. Washington (537.113), 2. Brown (5:39.626), 3. California (5:42.063)
Second Varsity 8+
Top Three: 1. California (5:42.880), 2. Princeton (5:45.133), 3. Brown (5:46.282)
Third Varsity 8+
Top Three: 1. California (5:47.554), 2. Washington (5:49.750), 3. Brown (5:50.794).
Freshman Varsity 8+
Top Three: 1. Washington (5:46.324), 2. California (5:52.105), 3. Brown (5:54.086)
Top Three: 1. Washington (6:21.322), 2. Brown (6:24.619), 3. California (6:27.615)