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UVA Wins 2012 NCAA Rowing National Championship - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

UVA Wins 2012 NCAA Rowing National Championship

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The UVA rowing team won the NCAA Championship for the second time in program history Sunday, taking home the title on Mercer Lake in West Windsor, New Jersey.

The 'Hoos were one of three teams (along with California and Princeton) to advance all three of their boats to Sunday's grand final.

Virginia (87 points) finished five points ahead of Michigan (82), California (78), and Princeton (77).

The Cavaliers placed second in the Varsity Four and fifth in the Second Varsity Eight.

Trailing Michigan by three points heading into the First Varsity Eight grand final, UVA won the race to claim the boat's first ever national title and clinch the NCAAA Championship.

"It feels great," UVA head coach Kevin Sauer said. "I was just thinking, 'Come on you guys, do what you are capable to do.' I told them before the race to remember who they are and what they want, and they just went out and did it. They were tight in the beginning and were a little behind, but they were patient and in the second thousand (meters). They were awesome."

Virginia's First Varsity Eight held off Michigan and won by nearly a full boat length in 6:18.72. The Wolverines finished second in 6:22.09. The Cavaliers were seeded first in the First Varsity Eight coming into the regatta.

"For the last month or two, we felt we had a shot, but it had to be a team performance," UVA associate head coach Steve Pritzker said. "We knew the Four had to be at the top. We knew the Second Varsity Eight had to make the grand final, and they did that. I think it's great that even though those two boats didn't win, they can see what a great part they played in this team championship."

In the Varsity Four, the 'Hoos raced out to a five-seat lead over Ohio State by 500 meters, but Ohio State overcame UVa at the end and won the race in 7:13.09 to Virginia's time of 7:15.18.

UVA's Varsity Four finished second for the second straight year and the fifth time overall. Virginia has won four Varsity Four national titles (2004, 2005, 2007, 2010).

In the Second Varsity Eight, Michigan won in a time of 6:37.04, ahead of Ohio State (6:38.94) and Cal (6:40.85). Virginia placed fifth in 6:44.97.

"This is more than I could have ever asked for," UVA senior co-captain Sarah Borchelt said. "The best part is that we had almost the entire team here cheering us on. Every day, every race, the ups and downs and the blood, sweat, and tears we shed was all worth it."

UVA Lineups
First Varsity Eight: Coxswain Sidney Thorsten, Keziah Beall, Martha Kuzzy, Kristine O'Brien, Sarah Cowburn, Fiona Schlesinger, Susanne Grainger, Hemingway Benton, Carli Goldberg

Second Varsity Eight: Coxswain Sarah Jordan, Chandler Lally, Elle Murray, Kaitlin Fanikos, Brandy Herald, Liza Tullis, MacKenzie Leahy, Sarah Borchlet, Morgan Joseph

Varsity Four: Coxswain Cristine Candland, Ruth Retzinger, Hunter Terry, Chelsea Simpson, Carolyn Glandorf

PHOTOS COURTESY OF MATT RILEY/UVA MEDIA RELATIONS

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