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2016 NCAA Women’s Rowing Championships Begin this Weekend

by Genevieve Carrillo, gcarrillo@usrowing.org | May 27, 2016
The Sacramento State Aquatic Center will again set the scene for the 2016 NCAA Rowing Championship, where the country’s top DI, DII and DIII women will compete, hosted by the Pac-12 conference.

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GOLD RIVER, Calif.  -
The Sacramento State Aquatic Center will again set the scene for the 2016 NCAA Rowing Championship, where the country’s top DI, DII and DIII women will compete, hosted by the Pac-12 conference.

All heats for the women’s eights and fours will take place on Friday, May 27th from 8:12Boat[8] a.m. to 5:12 p.m.; beginning with the heats for all boats and ending with repechages for the Division III and Division I eights, as well as the Division I fours. Racing will wrap up on Sunday, May 29th with the grand finals for all Division I and II boats.

The Ohio State University will be entering the regatta aiming for an unprecedented fourth national title in a row after earning a record third-consecutive national title in 2015, a feat no team had achieved since the NCAA began sponsoring the sport in 1997.

In 2015, the Buckeyes scored a total of 126 points in the 2015 Championships, besting the University of California by 12 points. Ohio State was the preseason poll favorite but dropped to fourth during the season and has been edging their way up to second in the CRCA/USRowing Coaches Poll, falling behind Cal.

"It's always tenuous as you move towards the NCAAs,” said Ohio State Head Coach Andy Teitlebaum. “Everyone is getting faster, margins get tighter, and a lot of speed you haven't seen yet this spring is all in one place at the same time. We're looking forward to the challenges we'll meet on Lake Natoma. I’m sure whoever comes out on top will have had a great regatta.”

In Division II, defending champion Barry University is currently ranked in first place, earning five first-place votes and finished winning both the varsity four and varsity eight at the Dad Vail Regatta on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia earlier this month. 

Despite not showing at NCAAs last year, Western Washington University from Bellingham, Wash. is determined to show their strength. Following a decisive finish at the Western Intercollegiate Rowing Association on Lake Natoma in late April, the team is looking to capitalize at that venue again. 

“Our squad is excited for our heats,” said Western Washington University Head Coach John Fuchs. “We couldn't be more ready.”

Western Washington will be facing Barry, Humboldt State, Nova Southeastern, Central Oklahoma, and Mercyhurst.

Williams College has moved in the rankings from third to first in the Division III poll. In 2015, Williams earned fifth place in the Division III team points totals, but the team feels prepared to make a strong impression on Lake Natoma this weekend. Williams’ Head Coach Kate Maloney commented that Williams crew has been improving daily and getting more confident in their speed.

“I am excited to watch them take the final steps here at NCAAs that will allow them to have their best race of the season,” said Maloney.

In addition to Williams, Wesleyan University, Ithaca College, William Smith College, Bates College, Pacific Lutheran University, Wellesley College, and Washington College will all be competing for the title of NCAA Division III champion. 

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