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No. 9 Syracuse women’s rowing made program history this weekend with a 10th place team finish at the NCAA Championships. The Orange’s previous best was set in 2002, when they finished 12th overall.
In individual events, SU’s varsity 8 finished 12th, while SU’s second varsity 8 and varsity 4 both finished 11th at the competition. The Orange received an at-large bid to the championship following a third-place finish at the Atlantic Coast Conference Championships on May 14-15 in Clemson, South Carolina. All three boats competed in the petite finals, a race below the grand finals as the crews competed for 7th through 12th place.
SU’s varsity 8 qualified for the petite final following a sixth-place finish (6:31.507) in their A/B semifinal heat, where No. 1 seed Texas (6:09.073) and No. 5 seed Michigan (6:13.681) finished first and second, respectively.
Despite a three-way tie in team points between the No. 1 seed Texas, No. 2 seed Washington and No. 3 seed Stanford, the Longhorns won the national title because of their best finish among the schools in the varsity 8 event. The Cardinal earned silver and the Huskies earned bronze.
The Orange had to qualify for the A/B semifinals via repechage after a third-place finish (6:34.952) in their preliminary heat of the competition, where they were heavily defeated by No. 3 Stanford (6:18.170) and No. 7 Rutgers (6:22.098). In the repechage, SU narrowly finished second (6:25.122), edged out by No. 11 Princeton (6:24.797). But this top-two finish was enough to send the Orange to the semifinals.
In the petite final, the Orange’s varsity 8 finished sixth (6:42.019), placing them 12th overall in the competition. Their second varsity 8 — which qualified for the petite final following a sixth-place finish (6:30.184) in the A/B semifinals — finished fifth in the petite final (6:40.017), earning 11th overall in the competition.
The Orange varsity 4 also finished fifth in the petite final (7:26.863), earning 11th place overall. To qualify for the petite final, SU finished third (7:14.435) in its preliminary heat, forcing the Orange to compete in the repechage heat to advance to the A/B semifinals. Syracuse finished first in the repechage heat before finishing sixth (7:17.123) in the semifinals.
This year’s historic appearance at the NCAA Championships marks the fifth team championship showing in program history, most recently in 2018 when the team placed 16th. The Orange have received four varsity 8 at-large bids, with the best finish coming in 2001 as the varsity 8 finished sixth in the grand final.
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