Hawkeye rowing looking for consistency in Austin

The Iowa rowing team will turn to fresh faces as it heads to Austin, Texas, for the Longhorn Invitational.


Michael Guhin

Iowa's second varsity crew rows back after losing to Wisconsin by 6.07 seconds in the first session of a women's rowing meet on Lake MacBride on Saturday April 13, 2019. Iowa won 3 out of 12 races with the varsity 8 crew winning both races for the day.

Sarah Altemeier, Sports Reporter

The No. 13 Iowa rowing squad was supposed to travel to Rhode Island last weekend, but the event was canceled because of high winds and thunderstorms in the forecast on the Seekonk River, where crews had been scheduled to compete.

The Hawkeyes took their two weeks off from competition to refocus.

“I think part of [this time off from competing] has been this retooling process and finding different places for people to sit to try to benefit the team as a whole, and the group has been really, really good about it,” Iowa head coach Andrew Carter said. “I think a lot of times, rowing teams can get bogged down in the hierarchy in the crews’ progression, but our group is pretty mature in that they see everywhere has its merit, and wherever they are, they want to make it the best possible case it can be.

“I think we found a little bit of something in the 4 that could be a good improvement from the last time they raced at our home event. I think the second 8 continues to improve. We have some new faces in there, some really young faces in there.”

Among these new faces will be freshmen Molly Rygh and Lauren Collier.

RELATED: Hawkeye rowing has success, room for improvement at lone home meet

This weekend, Iowa and the two new additions to the 1V8 will travel to Austin, Texas, to compete in the Longhorn Invitational. There will be eight teams, including Iowa, and the competition will be high, with seven of eight teams going into the weekend ranked in the top 20.

This high-level field comprises of No. 4 Texas, No. 10 Virginia, No. 11 Southern California, No. 13 Iowa, No. 16 Indiana, No. 18 Oregon State, No. 20 Oklahoma, and Notre Dame.

The morning rounds will consist of two heats of four boats in each of the boat classes. Iowa has drawn Virginia, Oklahoma, and Oregon State for the first round. The top two scoring crews from each class will advance to the A final, and the bottom two teams will race in the B final in the afternoon.

The Hawkeyes have had success in the 1V8 boat this season — it was the only crew to row to a first-place finish at Iowa’s Lake Macbride event. The crew was named the Big Ten Boat of the Week after that performance.

As the crews attempt to step up their performances, they will work on consistency.

“I think that’s the biggest thing for the second 8, the 4, on down through our second Novice 8, is to work on that consistency,” Carter said. “I think, technically, everybody is coming along. We’re finally starting to get a little bit of consistent water time. We got to move home to the boathouse this week for the first time since September. So we hope to be on the steep part of curve in terms of improving speed, especially for those crews that look for that consistency. A consistency in practice, hopefully, will lead to consistency in performance.”

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