PRINCETON, N.J. -- The 2013 Ivy League Women's
Rowing Championship is poised to once again showcase heated heats
and fantastic finals as Cooper River Park in Pennsauken, N.J.,
serves as the familiar backdrop to determine which crews are the
fastest in the conference and among the fastest in the country.
Princeton comes in as the prohibitive favorite with the top boats in all three varsity eights and as the League's top team, ranked fifth in the May 8 USRowing/Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association Poll presented by Pocock Racing Shells. The Tigers enter the championship with wins in nine of their 10 regattas this spring, including an unbeaten mark on their home course on Lake Carnegie.
The only setback for Princeton's first varsity eight was a second-place finish to Radcliffe in the Class of 1975 Cup race just a month prior. The win snapped the Tigers' 25-race Ivy streak and gave the Black and White its first Class of 1975 title since 2007.
Radcliffe's win over Princeton came part of an up-and-down season which saw the eighth-ranked Black and White suffer a season-opening defeat to Brown, a controversial result against Yale and tough losses to No. 3 Ohio State in its final regular-season tuneup to go along with a sweep of local foes in the Beanpot and wins over Dartmouth and Syracuse to retain the O'Leary Cup.
Yale heads to the Cooper River on a three-race winning streak, boasting wins over Brown and Rhode Island in addition to its Case Cup victory over Radcliffe. The ninth-ranked Bulldogs have their sights on avenging Princeton's dominating sweep in the Eisenberg Cup regatta held on their home course of the Housatonic River.
The League's remaining three ranked crews -- Brown (12th), Columbia (15th) and Cornell (17th) -- are in position to make the grand finals among the most competitive in recent history.
Brown looks to repeat its Cooper River performance from earlier in the month when the Bears earned the top spot in three of the four events to win Charles G. Willing, Jr. team trophy at the Eastern Association of Women's Rowing Colleges (EAWRC) Sprints. Brown has not hoisted the Sally P. Shoemaker Ivy League trophy since 2008, the same season Bears scored their seventh of eight NCAA Championships.
Brown's lone EAWRC Sprints loss was in the first varsity eight grand final and was its second defeat in a week to Columbia, which grabbed a hard-fought Sprints victory by just under four seconds despite dealing with illness and exams back on campus. The Lions' first varsity eight also boasts wins this season over Penn, Yale, Dartmouth, Northeastern and Bucknell.
Cornell comes into this year's championship with aspirations of building on its 2012 showing -- a program-best, second-place finish in the first varsity eight grand final.
2013 IVY LEAGUE WOMEN'S ROWING CHAMPIONSHIP SEEDINGS
As of May 13
First Varsity Eight
Second Varsity Eight
Third Varsity Eight
Varsity Four A
Varsity Four B