Jayhawks open 2019 season at Cooper Sprints
CHERRY HILL, N.J. – Kansas opened up the 2019 season with five shells competing at the Cooper Sprints in Cherry Hill, New Jersey on Sunday.
A fourth-place finish in the Grand Final from the Second Varsity Four highlighted the Jayhawks’ first competition of 2019. The Wakarusa advanced to the Grand Final after crossing the finish line in second place in the qualifying heat, finishing less than a second behind Drexel (8:09.17).
Freshman coxswain Danica Pecana, freshman Abby Benedict, freshman Izzy Hauber, freshman Maggie Habben and sophomore Katie Donnellan made up the Second Varsity Four that earned the top finish of the day for the Jayahwks. After crossing the finish line in 8:17.83 behind third-place Navy, the Wakarusa earned fourth place in the top final.
KU’s First Varsity Eight came in behind Rutgers and Clemson for third place (6:57.46), advancing Wave the Wheat to the Petite Final and eventually finishing third with a time of 6:45.02.
- KU rounded out the top three of the Women’s Second Varsity Eight Petite Final as Ad Astra finished .04 seconds behind Drexel.
- Kansas’ First Varsity Four, the Oread, placed fourth in the Petite Final with a time of 7:53.18.
- In the Women’s Third Varsity Eight Petite Final, the Quiet Beast finished fourth in 7:32.71.
Head coach Carrie Cook-Callen
On the overall performance of the Jayhawks:
“Our top boats raced the heats a bit tentative, but gained some valuable experience in doing so. Both came out racing better in the finals. The 3V8 had trouble getting a clean start after clashing oars with Rutgers in their final, which put them into a bit of a panic and behind to begin their race.”
On the younger student-athletes first competition:
“Ten of our 37 athletes raced their first and second ever 2k races on the water today. An additional four raced their first collegiate 2k’s today. Overall, that young group did well, but will be much better prepared as we move forward in our spring racing schedule.”
On preparing for the rest of the season:
“We know as we get more time on the water things will continue to come together. This group is working hard and will make some big jumps in execution and technique to gain speed as we prepare for Sarasota in two weeks.”
The Jayhawks will be back in action at the Sunshine State Invite April 5-6 in Sarasota, Florida.
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