BY LUKE REYNOLDS
PHOTO BY LISA WORTHY
The University of Texas came into the 2022 NCAA Women’s Rowing National Championship at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota-Bradenton ranked No. 1.
After the first round of racing concluded the morning of May 27, it was clear why.
“We had a really good first day, and everyone did what they needed to do. There’s always some uncertainty heading into this weekend, so it was great to have a solid first day,” said Texas head coach Dave O’Neill. “Managing the efforts over these three days is really important, and everyone was happy with the way things went.”
The Longhorns swept all three events in women’s Division I racing picking up wins in the first-varsity eight, second-varsity eight, and four. Texas advanced all three boats directly to the A/B semifinals that will take place May 28.
In the other three DI first-varsity eight events, Princeton, Stanford, and Brown took the top spots with the Tigers posting a time of 6:09.912—a mere second behind Texas’ 6:08.328. It’s prudent not to compare times in rowing—as most know—but with stakes this high, they’re worth keeping an eye on.
In Division II racing, No. 3 Mercyhurst defeated the defending champs from Edmond, Oklahoma, the University of Central Oklahoma, in the DII eights, earning the Lakers a direct berth to the grand finals. The Bronchos will have to duke it out in the reps to earn a spot alongside Mercyhurst and fight to defend their title.
In Division III racing, Bates won both its heats in the first-varsity and second-varsity eight events. WPI won the first-varsity eight heat one and Wellesley took the top spot in the second-varsity eight heat two.