April 7, 2012
SOLON, Iowa -- The University of Iowa women's rowing team hosted Louisville, Michigan and Michigan State on Saturday in a double dual event. The crews raced across a2000-meter course on Lake MacBride. Iowa fell to Michigan in the morning session, 43-26, and Michigan State, 45-24 in the afternoon session. Michigan is ranked second in the latest CRCA/US Rowing Coaches poll, while Michigan State is 15th.
The Hawkeyes started the morning with victories in the 2nd Novice 8 and Novice 8. Iowa's 2nd novice 8 crew crossed the finish line first with a time of 7:32.1, while Michigan finished with a time of 7:59.0. The novice 8 crew claimed Iowa's second victory. Iowa pulled ahead by two boat seats in the most exciting race of the morning to finish first with a time of 7:19.1. Michigan came in at 7:19.9.
"The 2nd novice 8 in the morning performed pretty consist with the way they have been practicing," said Assistant Coach Courtney Valerious. "We managed to get ahead of Michigan and Michigan State, which was really exciting. We started the morning off with a bang. The first novice 8 has been working on making a lot of changes the last two weeks of training. It's was exciting to see them execute the race plans accordingly. They were really excited and it was a very close race between us and Michigan."
Following the novice 8's, Michigan took the top-spot in the 2nd varsity 4 with a time of 7:54.1, while Iowa finished in a time of 8:44.0. Michigan went on to take the victory in the varsity 4. The Wolverines recorded a time of 7:52.4 and Iowa finished at 7:46.8.
The morning competition ended with the varsity 8 crews. Michigan earned two more victories in the 2nd varsity 8 and varsity 8. In the 2nd varsity 8, Michigan raced across the finish line first with a time of 7:02.7. Iowa followed in a time of 7:25.1.
The crews concluded the morning competition with the varsity 8. Michigan won the event in a time of 6:50.1, while Iowa finished at 7:23.9.
Iowa began the afternoon session with a victory over Michigan State in the 2nd novice 8. The Hawkeyes recorded a time of 7:50.2, while Michigan State finished at 8:08.4. The novice 8 crew raced in the next event and posted a second place finish with a time of 7:37.6. Michigan State won the event with a time of 7:33.6.
"The afternoon novice crews both got together and recognized some very specific things to work on," said Valerious. "The 2nd novice 8 had another great race, however I think fatigue got the best of us. This is our first time doing two races in one day. Regardless, both crews executed the changes that they wanted to see the second time around. We are excited for our next opportunity."
Michigan State collected victories in the 2nd varsity 4 and varsity 4. The Spartans raced in a time of 8:12.0 to win the 2nd varsity 4 over Iowa (8:31.0). In the varsity 4, Michigan State crossed the finish line first with a time of 7:50.0, while Iowa finished at 8:08.0.
The 2nd varsity 8 crew for Michigan State tallied another first place finish for the Spartans. The crew posted a time of 7:11.6 to finish ahead of Iowa (7:20.4). Iowa ended the competition with a second place finish in the varsity 8. The crew posted a time of 7:13.2, while Michigan State won the event in a time of 6:59.5.
"After some changes, the varsity 8 had some more unity in their swing and application of power in the afternoon," Head Coach Mandi Kowal said. "As a result, they were able to sustain their rating.
"It's a pretty strong field here today," Kowal said. "The Big Ten is very competitive this year. I'm excited about the performances from our novice crews. That's the future of our program right there."
Kowal was also pleased to host a competition this spring.
"It's always nice to be at home," Kowal said. "It's good for the team and for the seniors. We have a young group and most of them haven't competed at home. The parents group is just awesome and some of our athletes' friends on campus could come out and watch. We've been traveling and racing, and it means a lot to be at home."
The Hawkeyes return to action on April 21 when they travel to Alabama for a dual.