April 1, 2012
SAN DIEGO -Full Results
The freshman eight boat from the second-ranked California women's rowing team picked up the lone grand final victory for the Golden Bears Sunday at the San Diego Crew Classic. Cal's varsity eight placed fourth and the junior varsity eight came in fifth.
"I was cautiously optimistic heading into this weekend, but we are clearly not where we wanted to be," head coach Dave O'Neill said. "We got beat by some good crews, so we've got some work to do. We'll take these results and learn from them and get better."
The Cal freshmen beat second-place UCLA to the finish line by eight seconds, 7:24.3-7:32.3. Washington came in third at 7:37.2.
O'Neill has stressed all preseason about the strength of the underclassmen on his squad. The Bears proved O'Neill to be accurate this weekend.
"We made a decision to race a good novice eight rather than trying to determine a four at this point," O'Neill said. "The Crew Classic has always been a time for a fast novice, and I'm glad we made that decision. Some of those women will definitely be stepping into the priority crews in the weeks ahead."
USC won the varsity eight grand final with a time of 7:03.9. Three Pac-12 teams finished in the top four with Washington taking third (7:10.8) and Cal fourth (7:15.6).
"Things didn't go our way today or this weekend," O'Neill said about the varsity eight boat. "The crew was good for the first 1000m but could not sustain it. That's a bit uncharacteristic for us, so we've got to get that figured out. It's always tough to lose, even this early in the season, but we're keeping things in perspective. Of course, we clearly need to get faster. I'd say we're no longer the favorites in the Pac-12, and being the underdog is fine with us."
The Bears came in second behind Temple in the open eight with a time of 7:21.6.
Cal takes next week off before venturing to Lake Natoma for the Lake Natoma Invitational from April 14-15.
2012 San Diego Crew Classic
Junior Varsity Eight
Junior Varsity Eight