This Sunday, Stanford’s No. 3 women’s crew and men’s crew teams will converge at Lake Natoma in Gold River, California for a fighting chance at the Pac-12 Championship title.
The men’s most recent match at the end of April resulted in a devastating loss against the California Golden Bears at the annual Big Row in Redwood Shores, CA. Repeating their performance from last year, the Bears decisively claimed all three races by an average margin of 22 seconds.
While the men fell to their Bay Area rival, Stanford’s women’s rowing came out on top in the competition. The Cardinal women’s team surpassed their opponents by winning four of their six races: Third Varsity Eight team (6:42.70), Second Varsity Eight (6:30.90), Second Varsity Four (7:32.50) and First Varsity Four (7:06.60).
At the end of March, Stanford women won all of its races at the Pac-12 Invitational and went on to win 10 of their 14 races at the Lake Natoma Invitational a few weeks later, alluding to a successful season that will hopefully continue on Sunday.
Since 2007, the No. 1 University of Washington Huskies have consistently claimed the Pac-12 Men’s Championship, with the only interruptions coming in 2009 and 2016 from Cal. The Cardinal men’s team has been unable to gain a stronghold on the conference crown since 1960. However, they may capture the winds of luck this Sunday and rise from the third-place position they have been grasping onto since last year’s Pac-12 Championships, where they accumulated a total of 54 points and bronze in all three races.
The women’s team had more success in recent years, winning the conference title in 2014. Nonetheless, their main competitors are Cal, who claimed the title in 2015 and 2016, and Washington, who have been holding onto their place atop the conference for the past two years.
The competition on Sunday will have events for the teams within each participating school in the varsity four and novice/freshman eight, as well as first, second and third varsity finals. Stanford’s performance this weekend will determine if they will compete in the Intercollegiate Rowing Association National Championships that will take place from May 29 to June 1 at the Sacramento State Aquatics Center.
Contact Leily Rezvani at lrezvani ‘at’ stanford.edu.