May 15, 2012
Los Angeles, Calif. - The seventh-ranked UCLA women's rowing team earned their second selection in three years to the NCAA Championships today. The Bruins will compete in the 16-team field at Lake Mercer in West Windsor, N.J. from Fri., May 25 to Sun., May 27.
UCLA, ranked No. 7 nationally in the latest top-20 poll (CRCA/USRowing Coaches), raced to a third-place team finish at Pac-12 Championships back on Sun., May 13, their highest team finish in head coach Amy Fuller Kearney's 11-year coaching tenure and their best overall since 1991. The Bruins' varsity eight finished fourth while the second varsity eight and varsity four crews each finished in third. The Bruins' novice eight boat had the best finish of the day, recording a second place finish in their race.
"We are thrilled to be heading back to the NCAA's," Fuller Kearney said. "We are a very strong team that has yet to show our top speed. We look forward to the opportunity to compete against the best teams in the country."
Each of 16 teams selected to compete at the NCAA Championships will race two varsity eight crews and one varsity four boat. Four other Pac-12 schools will join UCLA at the event. At-large bids Stanford, USC and Washington will compete in addition to conference champion California.
The Bruins' varsity eight, second varsity eight and varsity four will each begin the event by racing in elimination heats on Fri., May 25. The varsity eight will race in Heat No. 2 against Michigan, USC, Cornell and Michigan State. The second varsity eight crew will compete in Heat No. 1 versus California, Brown, Wisconsin and USC. The varsity four crew will participate in Heat No. 2 against Virginia, Washington, Michigan and Stanford.
The top three finishers in each heat will advance to the semifinals. The remaining boats will go to the repechage race on Friday afternoon, where the top three finishers will fill out the final three semifinal spots.
UCLA previously sent its top varsity eight boat as an at-large selection to the NCAA Championships back in 2005, 2006 and 2007. The Bruins also earned their first ever NCAA Championship team selection back in 2010 and finished 12th.