RCW: Sport Spotlight 4.9 (Rowing)
A post shared by Kansas Rowing (@kansasrowing) on Oct 22, 2017 at 7:18am PDT
— Kansas Rowing (@KU_Rowing) October 22, 2017
The fifth annual Jayhawk Jamboree was not just the first time that Kansas rowing hit the water for competition in 2017-18, but it was also the first regatta action for a pair of new KU eight shells.
The first, Ad Astra, was named after the Kansas motto “to the stars through difficulties.” For the second boat, the Jayhawks asked fans for some help. The community was able to send in suggestions and after narrowing all the names down to the top four, fans voted on their favorite.
“It was special to get people involved, get the buzz going and bring some additional excitement to the fall season,” interim head coach Carrie Cook-Callen said. “It’s always fun to have our boats have ties to tradition to the school and to the state.”
The new name couldn’t fit with the Kansas tradition more perfectly: Wave The Wheat.
Kansas celebrated the new name with a traditional boat christening that included a few words from Coach and the pouring of sparkling grape juice over the newly named boat.
Wave The Wheat saw its first competition at the Jamboree when the First Varsity Eight raced it twice on Sunday. Up first for the Jayhawks was the Collegiate Women’s Eight in which Wave The Wheat was up against over 20 other boats and finished in sixth place with a time of 13:04.62.
The First Varsity Eight was coxswained by junior Abigale Lane and rowers included redshirt junior McKayla Ross, senior BriAnna Dittberner, senior Kaelyn Thierolf, redshirt senior Margret Winter, junior Peyton Anderson, sophomore Morgan Kottas, sophomore Kaitlyn Finger and redshirt junior Meghan Karoly.
“I think we still can improve and we’re going to see a lot of improvement from us the rest of the season,” Ross said on the First Varsity Eight.
The second race of the day was the Collegiate Women’s Eight 300m Sprint. Kansas competed in heat four against Tulsa and conference rival Kansas State. The Jayhawks finished in 55.03 seconds, less than a second behind Kansas State.
Wave The Wheat and KU’s other boats will be in action next for the Tulsa Fall Regatta Nov. 3-4.