Huskies Blemish Cal's Record in 100th Anniversary Race

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Cal crew's stellar record suffered this last weekend when both the men's and women's squads competed against Washington. The women's squad won two of their four races against the Huskies, while the men lost all four of theirs at Redwood Shores, Calif.

Last Saturday was the 100th anniversary of the dual between Bears and the Huskies. And while the men fell in their varsity race, the Cal women were able to claim the Simpson Cup, the trophy for winning the varsity eight race.

This was the seventh-straight year the Bears' women's squad have won the varsity eight race. The second varsity eight also won. But the novice eight and the varsity four lost their races to Washington. The women's varsity eight boat remains undefeated.

"(The varsity eight's) race was really aggressive," co-captain Mary Jehgers wrote via text message. "But we could have had a much faster second half. Overall there was some good racing and fighting."

On the men's side, the No. 1 Huskies defeated the No. 2 Cal in all four contests. The Bears raced two varsity eight boats, a varsity four and a novice eight. In the men's varsity eight race Washington clocked a time of 5:31.6, while Cal crossed the finish line in 5:35.7.

"It's an emotional race," men's coxswain Zachary Vlahos said. "It's frustrating. But that being said, it's how you come back from it. I want to make sure that we bounce back and get right back to work."

Though any loss is a disappointment, there was something to celebrate: The boats have been getting faster. The varsity eight's 2000 meter time was four seconds faster on Saturday than their previous race.

"We all tried our best. We all know there's still stuff to work on," men's coxswain Jiean Li said. "If I were to pick out one thing to work on, I'm not sure I could."

After a weekend of competitive racing and good pieces, but disappointing results, the Bears have their work cut out for them. With the crew season well under way the crews know what areas need improvement.

"I thought this weekend really showed each boat where they can improve but also where we have some great strengths," Jehgers said.

Both the Bears' squads will face Stanford at the Big Row next weekend at Redwood Shores. The Cardinal's men's and women's squads are both ranked No. 3.

"I don't want to forget this weekend, but I want to move forward," Vlahos said. "Okay, it happened, but let's get passed it."

At last year's NCAA championship regatta, the Stanford women placed fifth and Cal's women placed fourth. The Cardinal's men's squad, who are not regulated by the NCAA, are historically dominant and placed third at last year's IRA Championship Regatta.

"Stanford, you know, they've been very good," Vlahos said. "They're a dangerous crew. We can't go into next weekend expecting to win."


Contact Anna Hiatt at [email protected]

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