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May 29, 2003

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The University of Virginia women’s rowing team begins competition on Friday (May 30) in the seventh NCAA Women’s Rowing Championships at Eagle Creek Reservoir in Indianapolis. The competition is scheduled to continue through Sunday (June 1).

Virginia is one of 12 teams selected to compete in the championships. The other team selections include Brown, California, Harvard, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Princeton, Stanford, Washington, Washington State and Yale. Virginia joins Brown, Princeton and Washington as the only schools to receive team invitations to each of the seven NCAA Women’s Rowing Championships.

As a team selection, Virginia has three crews competing in the NCAA Championships. The 12 schools competing for the team title have one crew in each of the contested races – the first varsity eight, the second varsity eight and the varsity four.

Four additional schools received at-large invitations to participate in the first varsity eight competition. Those schools include Boston University, Southern California, Tennessee and Texas. The four schools receiving at-large invitations in the varsity eight can win that competition, but without an entry in all three races are ineligible for the team title.

UVa’s first varsity eight crew is ranked fifth in the nation in the final USRowing/Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association NCAA Division I Varsity Eight Coaches Poll of the 2003 season. Stanford is ranked first in the poll followed by Harvard, Washington, Princeton and Virginia.

Virginia finished fourth as a team at last year’s NCAA Championships in Indianapolis. UVa finished second in the varsity four, third in the second varsity eight and 10th in the first varsity eight last year. Brown won the team championship last year with Washington finishing second and California third.

Virginia has finished in the top seven in the team competition at each of the six previous NCAA Women’s Rowing Championships. The Cavaliers finished fourth in 1997, third in 1998, second in 1999, third in 2000, seventh in 2001 and fourth in 2002.

Virginia won its fourth consecutive Atlantic Coast Conference Championship on April 19 and the Cavaliers won the South Region Championship at the Central/South Region Sprints on May 18.

The women’s rowing team is in its eighth season as an intercollegiate sport at UVa.

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