Columbus, Ohio – The fourth-ranked Ohio State women’s rowing team will head to West Windsor, N.J., this Friday through Sunday (May 26-28) for the NCAA Championships. The three-day regatta will take place on Mercer Lake and all races will be streamed at NCAA.com.
This trip to the NCAA Championships will mark the 18th-straight appearance for head coach Andy Teitelbaum and the Buckeyes. Ohio State’s 1V4 is the highest seeded Buckeye boat at the regatta with a No. 4 ranking; the First Varsity Four owns a record of 30-4 overall, 8-4 in races. The 1V8 garnered the fifth seed at the regatta with a record of 31-4 overall (8-4 in races), and the 2V8 (29-6 overall) was labeled the seventh-best boat at the event.
The first boat on the water Friday morning for the Buckeyes will be the First Varsity Eight; the 1V8 will race out of lane two alongside Princeton, Virginia, Notre Dame, Navy and Massachusetts in the fourth heat for the 1V8’s at 9:36 a.m. ET. The 2V8 will be in the second heat for 2V8’s at 10 a.m. ET; it will race against California, Syracuse, Indiana and Northeastern. The final race of the morning for the Scarlet and Gray will be the 1V4; the First Varsity Four will hit the water at 11:12 a.m. ET against Yale, Washington State, Gonzaga, Northeastern and Massachusetts.
Each boat division has four heats apiece Friday morning. The top-two boats from each heat Friday morning will automatically advance to Saturday’s A/B semifinal. The remaining boats will re-adjourn Friday afternoon for second-chance races most commonly known as repechages to seed boats for Saturday’s semifinals. Saturday will consist of two A/B semifinals and two C/D semifinals. After the conclusion of those races, boats will be slotted in one of four finals (D final, C final, Petite final and Grand final). From the A/B semifinal heats, three crews advance to the Grand Final, with the remainder competing in the Petite Final. The top-three crews from C/D semifinals advance to the C final, with the remainder slotted in the D final.
Ohio State History at the NCAA Championships
The Buckeyes have competed at 17 of the 20 NCAA championships all-time and own 10 Top 5 team finishes at the regatta. Last season, Ohio State finished second as a team with 126 points behind California (129 points). From 2013-15, Ohio State won the NCAA title three years in a row, becoming the only program in NCAA rowing to accomplish that feat.
Ohio State owns seven individual national titles, the fourth-highest total in NCAA rowing history. The First Varsity Four won the first NCAA title in program history in 2012 and was also a winner in 2013. The Second Varsity Eight won back-to-back championships in 2013 and 2014, while the First Varsity Eight is the three-time defending national champion.
Historic Varsity Eight
At last year’s NCAA Championships, Ohio State’s 1V8 won its third-consecutive national title, marking a feat that no other 1V8 boat had ever accomplished. The national title streak began in 2014 and since then, the 1V8 boasts a combined record of 160-6 throughout the past four seasons. No boat in NCAA history has ever won four-consecutive national titles; the only other boat to ever attempt a fourth-straight title was Washington’s 1V4 in 2002 after they had won the title three years in a row from 1999-2001.
In the Rankings
The Buckeyes enter the NCAA championship regatta in a tie for fourth place in the CRCA/US Rowing Poll; Ohio State and Texas both garnered 412 points for the positioning. No. 1 Washington enters the regatta as the heavy favorite with all three of their boats earning the top seed. California (455 points) and Michigan (416 points) are slotted as the No. 2 and No. 3 seeds, respectively.
Kruse Rows In Big Ten Accolades
Ida Kruse, an instrumental cog in the 1V8’s stunning success in 2017, was named the 2017 Big Ten Rowing Athlete of the Year last Wednesday (May 17). Kruse is the sixth Buckeye rower to earn this honor joining the likes of Conny Kirsch (2002), Ninett Kossowsky (2006), Claire-Louise Bode (2013), Catherine Shields (2014 & 2016) and Ashley Bauer (2015).
The biggest win of the season came via the 1V8 at the Big Ten Championships. Down to the last race of the B1G regatta, Ohio State entered the event trailing Michigan by eight points (116-108). Kruse, along with her teammates, rowed in stunning fashion to win the race and helped Ohio State secure its fifth conference title in a row.
The Buckeyes were busy this past summer, with five rowers competing at the U-23 Rowing Championships in Rotterdam, Netherlands and one rower competing at the Rio Olympics. Aina Cid Centelles represented Spain at the Olympics in the women’s pair event. Cid Centelles and her partner, Anna Boada Peiro, made it to the finals and placed sixth in the event.
At U-23’s, Daphne Socha, Cassandra Johnson, Rachel Engel, Stephanie Williams and Laura Monteso Esmel all competed for their countries. Socha represented France in the quad sculls and won bronze. Johnson competed in the 8+ for the U.S. against fellow teammates Engel and Williams, who both rowed for Australia. Johnson and the U.S. won gold with a time of 6:36.90 and the Aussies came in fifth. Monteso Esmel competed for Spain in the lightweight skull pair.