New, Jersey – The Oregon State men’s rowing team completed the first day of the Intercollegiate Rowing Championships, with the Junior Varsity 8 ensuring at least a top-12 finish in their event.
The Varsity 8, Junior Varsity 8, and Third Varsity 8 all raced in morning heats, followed by repechage races in the afternoon.
"Day one at the IRA is really important for the team,” Head Coach Steve Todd said. “You test out all the work you've done against a lot of new teams."
First to hit the water was the V8. Oregon State performed well, competing with Wisconsin and holding off a charging Syracuse boat at the end of the race. With a fourth place finish and a final time of 5:51.224, the Beavs later raced in the repechage later that afternoon.
The V8 crew had a better start and ran with Columbia in the early going. Midway through, Columbia extended their lead and Florida Tech was right alongside. In the last 500 meters, OSU was able to close the gap, but was unable to overtake the leader to move on to the A/B semifinal, finishing with a time of 5:43.249.
"We needed to be just a little better today to really reach our goal in the Varsity 8,” Todd said. “They've still got a great chance to take on some very fast crews and show their top speed."
Next up for the Beavs was the 2V8. The crew had a very spirited race in the morning heat and were pushing Boston University late in the race. Despite falling to Wisconsin earlier in the year at the Stanford Invite, the Beavers were able to finish ahead of Wisconsin today. With a third place finish and final time of 5:52.725, OSU headed to the afternoon repechage.
Oregon State started the race in a mission and took an early lead, making a very hard push to get out front and control the race. Dartmouth stayed right on their stern the whole race and never let the Beavers get comfortable. OSU held the lead at 5:48.995 and will move onto the A/B semifinal, while also securing no lower than a top-12 finish.
"These guys are clicking right now, we mixed in some freshmen and the boat speed has really picked up,” Todd said. “They're ready to make the most of their opportunity in the A/B Semi Finals and see if they can make it into the Grand Final with an upset performance tomorrow.”
The Third Varsity closed out day one for the Beavs, racing well and staying close to Yale and Wisconsin in the morning heat. OSU finished fifth with a time of 6:05.883, sending them to the afternoon repecahge.
The Beavers 3V8 repechage was one of the closest races of the day, with the top-5 finishers coming within 6.4 seconds of one another. The Beavs finished fifth with a time of 5:53.360, meaning that they will race in the third-level final on Sunday.
“The 3V8 made some great improvements from the morning’s race to the afternoon,” Todd said. “They ran right with the pack, in there with some very good teams.”
The IRA Championships continue tomorrow with semifinal races, where Oregon State’s V8 and 2V8 will be competing. Live times and results can be found here: http://ira.qra.org/.
Results: V8 (Heat 3) 1. California 5:40.679 2. BU 5:43.945 3. Wisconsin 5:49.261 4. Oregon State 5:51.224 5. Syracuse 5:53.239 6. Gonzaga 6:15.968
2V8 (Heat 1) 1. California 5:45.691 2. BU 5:49.729 3. Oregon State 5:52.725 4. Wisconsin 5:54.404 5. GWU 6:04.815 6. FIT 6:15.635