LA JOLLA, Calif. - The University of California San Diego women's rowing team learned Monday that it has qualified its Varsity 8 crew for the upcoming NCAA Division II National Championships.
UC San Diego will compete against Barry, Central Oklahoma, Florida Tech, Mercyhurst, and Western Washington, May 25-27 at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota, Fla.
"We are very excited that the Varsity 8 is getting the opportunity to race at the NCAA Championships," said UC San Diego head coach Colin Truex. "This is one of the deepest and fastest Division II fields ever, and to be a part of the Championships is an honor."
The Tritons, along with Barry, earned Varsity 8 at-large berths. Central Oklahoma, Florida Tech, Mercyhurst, and Western Washington will field full teams with Varsity 8 as well as Varsity 4 crews, making them eligible for a team national title.
Friday's first day of Varsity 8 action will feature two three-boat heats with the winners of each heat advancing directly to Sunday's Grand Final. The remaining four crews will row in a repechage Saturday. The top two finishers in the repechage move on to the Grand Final and the other two will race in Sunday's Petite Final.
The Tritons will be up against Barry and Western Washington in Friday's heat.
In the latest national rankings (May 9), Central Oklahoma is No. 1, Florida Tech is No. 2, Western Washington is No. 3, Barry is No. 4, and UC San Diego is No. 5. Mercyhurst received votes but is not among the national top eight.
UC San Diego is making its seventh appearance at the NCAA Division II Championships.
In 2017, the Tritons qualified a full team, placing sixth overall in the Varsity 8 and fourth overall in the Varsity 4. Western Washington won its eighth national championship with a win in the Varsity 4 Grand Final and a runner-up finish in the Varsity 8 Grand Final.
In 2006, 2007, and 2008, the Tritons were also eligible for the national title after qualifying Varsity 8 and Varsity 4 boats. They finished as runner-up to Western Washington in 2007 and 2008. In 2005 and 2013, UC San Diego went with a Varsity 8 crew.
Most recently, UC San Diego's Varsity 8 rowed to an open water victory at the Dad Vail Regatta on the Schuylkill River outside of Philadelphia, the program's first-ever V8 win at the event. The Tritons' V8 also won at the San Diego Crew Classic on Mission Bay back in March.
"They have worked incredibly hard this year and have had a very successful season of racing," said Truex. "Their success is a product of a relentlessly consistent and focused drive at practice, as well as having a strong team behind them that has pushed them individually every step of the way."
NCAA DIVISION II NATIONAL CHAMPIONS
2017 - Western Washington
2016 - Barry
2015 - Barry
2014 - Humboldt State
2013 - Nova Southeastern
2012 - Humboldt State
2011 - Western Washington
2010 - Western Washington
2009 - Western Washington
2008 - Western Washington
2007 - Western Washington
2006 - Western Washington
2005 - Western Washington
2004 - Mercyhurst
2003 - UC Davis
2002 - UC Davis
UC SAN DIEGO AT THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
2017 - V8 6th, V4 4th, team 4th
2013 - V8 3rd
2008 - V8 2nd, V4 2nd, team 2nd
2007 - V8 2nd, V4 2nd, team 2nd
2006 - V8 5th, V4 3rd, team 4th
2005 - V8 5th