Washington State Showcases

Strong Novice Class!

By: Alexander Ashton and Sidney Cross


Washington State Cougar Crew had a strong showing at ACRAs this past weekend. The team raced on the former course for the 1996 Olympics under humid and hot conditions. Competition at the regatta was high caliber including top clubs like Michigan and UCSB.

Cougar Crew faced off against other top club teams from around the United States. The 1st Varsity had a total of four races over the course of this weekend, however even in the hot conditions they had a strong showing in each race. Their best race was in the Reps which decides what crews go to the Semi-Finals. The 1V pulled hard to finish second behind UMass and recorded their fastest time at 6:08.108. They then went on to face tough crews in the B-Final including Boston College and UC Davis. The 1V were duking it out with several other boats across the 1000m until Texas pulled away, which left only New Hampshire. With a valiant effort and a sprint called by Senior Coxswain Alyssa Kodama the 1V came across the finish line in 7 place, in front of New Hampshire. The Junior Varsity faced adversity once again this weekend, having to race in a 2002 Vespoli usually meant for heavyweight crews, the JV struggled in their first heat coming in sixth place. Commodore Griffin Berger stated after the race that “the JV’s mental game was strong and that pulling hard wasn’t the issue.” To improve their chances of having a successful race several seniors in the boat stepped up and asked for better equipment. With the help of the coaches the JV were able to use the Novice’s shell and oars. In the reps the JV had an outstanding sprint in the last 400m moving up five seats on DePaul to finish ahead of them by less than five tenths of a second. The JV finished off their season strong with a third place finish with a time of 6:33.898 in the Petite Finals, which garnered great praise from Coach Alec and Coach Arthur who both stated that “having a JV 8 is necessary to be a top club program, so for these guys to keep strong and keep on racing in the eight is a testament to the toughness of these guys and to what Cougar Crew is all about.”

Both novice entries, the N8 and NL4, had their best race of the year in Saturday's heats, advancing directly to the grand finals where their determination produced even more speed. It was our most competitive Novice 8 lineup since 2009's silver in that we finished less than a length out of medal contention. With a 5th place finish last year and 6th this year it shows consistent high level performance at the national level.  The Novice Lightweight 4 also found themselves in a very close race going into the last 500 meters, trading places with several crews to finish just out of the medals in 4th place. Arthur Ericson stated “I couldn't be more proud of the teamwork and effort of all 14 novice oarsmen and coxswains leading up to the national championships.”

Lightweight women dominated ACRA this weekend for Cougar Crew. This weekend’s races started off with the two 2x racing to get into finals. Both WSU 2x boats placed, taking first and third. The 2x boats knew that if they did not place in the top three of their race then they would have to race in the reps. Having another race later in the day in the Georgia heat was not an option so they pulled themselves across the line in order to not have to race again until Sunday morning in the grand finals. The lightweight 4+ also raced on Saturday in a race for lanes, and took it easy in order to allow a strong row on Sunday for the final event.

Sunday was a good day for the lightweight women. It started off with the 2x boats racing to see where they placed in the nation. Off the start the WSU boats were in the lead up to the first 500m where Wichita and Kansas State started to pull even. The WSU ‘A’ and ‘B’ boats stayed with them up until the 1000m when the stroke of the ‘B’ boat had an asthma attack. This caused them to drop back but continue to stay in the race, pulling hard and never stopping for a moment. The ‘A’ boat stayed with Wichita and Kansas State until they started to pull away. With the ‘A’ boat positioned in third place at this point in the race, the girls knew that it was going to hurt to keep off Purdue who was trying to get into a medaling position. With a power move, the ‘A’ boat stayed ahead and was able to keep their third place finish. Hannah Wilson and Sidney Cross took third in the nation in the 2x open weight event with Alyx Powell and Teresa Nguyen close behind.

The Lightweight 4+ was excited to finally race their official lineup after circumstances required them to substitute different rowers at the past two regattas. The WVL4+ was up against Cal State Long Beach and Northwestern, both of whom this crew has raced before at WIRA and Dad Vail respectively. Knowing that Long Beach was a good deal faster than our lineup based on their performance at WIRA and in Saturday’s race for lanes, the lightweights set their sights on beating Northwestern and defending their silver medal from last year’s ACRA’s. Off the start, Long Beach began pulling away from WSU and Northwestern in lane 4 and increased their open water lead throughout the 2k, the entire race was a head-to-head battle between WSU in lane 3 and Northwestern in lane 5. Coxswain Grace Montgomery says that, “Up to the 1000 meter mark, our crew was bow ball to bow ball with lane 5, going back and forth between which crew would have a slight lead in the moment”. Coming into the third 500, the lightweights knew they had to make a move and start taking seats on Northwestern if they hoped to medal in this race. A power move pushed the lightweights forward to have Northwestern’s bow ball on our crew’s bow pair, and with the motivation to pull for the graduating seniors, our coach Giles, and to defend 2015’s silver medal, the lightweights sprinted to have an open water lead over Northwestern as they crossed the finish line.

This weekend the lightweight women were pulling for more than just themselves and the other girls in their boats, but also for their coach Giles Dakin-White. Giles will be leaving Cougar Crew after coming to the program in the Fall of 2012 to coach the novice men. Giles began coaching the lightweight women back in the Fall of 2014 and brought focus and change to the team. Giles has coached his boats, men and women, to numerous wins and medals, but is now leaving the program to head back to dreary old England with his wife and son. Cougar Crew wishes Giles the best in the years to come and thanks him for being a coach to many of the men and women who are a part of this program.

The American Collegiate Rowing Association selects rowers each year for the All-Region team. This selection process is based off of 2,000 meter testing scores, performance of their crew, career racing results, accomplishments and leadership within their team, individual performances and coach recommendation. Junior Michael Marelli was selected as one of the rowers to the West All-Region Team. Alongside him Seniors Ashley Vu and Sidney Cross were selected to represent the West Region. Congratulations to our Cougar Crew rowers for earning these highly decorated awards.

Race Results

LWT Women: ACRA_2016_Lightweight_Women_Race_Results

Varsity and Novice Men: ACRA_2016_Mens_Racing_Results_1_


Cougar Crew Prepares to End Season at ACRAs

By Alex Ashton and Sidney Cross


Washington State Cougar Crew will wrap up its season this Saturday and Sunday at the ACRA National Championship Regatta on Lake Lanier in Gainesville, Georgia. The Cougs will be racing on the former course for the 1996 Olympic Games against competitive varsity and club programs from around the United States. The varsity and novice are looking to close out the season on a high note.

Coach Alec Hurley will be focusing on the eights as he has done all year and will have a Varsity 8+ and JV 8+ to represent Cougar Crew. Earlier this week he stated “the Varsity Men head to Nationals with a Varsity 8+ and Junior Varsity 8+ for the first time since 2010. We are excited for the opportunity to test our mettle against the top programs in the country. A great opportunity awaits us, I am looking forward to the athlete's’ willingness to rise to the occasion.”

The novice have been racing hard all season and are prepared more than ever to show that their speed has been no fluke this season. The novice have had great success over the year including making it into the Grand Finals at the San Diego Crew Classic and bringing home a bronze at WIRAs. Sam Callan stated that “we have been training for the end goal of ACRA’s since the beginning of the season, we are ready to bring it to Georgia and battle it out with the top teams.” All the Cougar Crew boats definitely have this attitude and are ready to step up and throw down some impressive times. The novice will be racing a Novice 8+ and Novice Lightweight 4+.

Last year at ACRAs the women’s lightweight 4+ was able to have a great race and win a silver medal in their lightweight event. This year the lightweights are entering another lightweight 4+ and two 2x.

At ACRAs we are seeing stiff competition in each race so there will be strong racing from all crews. Each crew will be racing two races, the first is a race for lanes, and then it will get into finals. In the lightweight women’s 4+ the girls will be racing against new and previous competitors at this regatta. The lightweight 4+ will be racing against Cal State, Long Beach, and Northwestern. The lightweight 4+ is looking forward to finally racing their lineup; after a few regattas of illness and injury had taken one of their rowers for WIRA and Dad Vail. This being a strong lineup the girls are ready to see what they are capable of doing with everyone in their boat being present. It was almost this exact lineup that won the silver medal in this event last year. The girls this year are coming back and are seeking an even better outcome in this weekend’s race. Let’s go for gold!

Cougar Crew Comes Away from PAC-12

With Enquist Trophy

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


This year was the first year that club teams at PAC-12s raced for the Enquist Trophy. The  trophy was created so that the club who won the most points would win, encouraging clubs to show up in force to PAC-12s. The end point totals were 21 for WSU, 17 for Colorado, and 9 for the University of Oregon, awarding WSU the trophy. The racing conditions were great, with smooth water and a very slight headwind.

The V8 has a really great race. Their main competitor was Colorado, the only other club in  their race. The V8 ended up beating Colorado by about 3 seconds with a 6:27, but they lost to all of the varsity schools in their race. The V8 said that they didn’t just race Colorado, they raced themselves. Even after they were ahead of Colorado, they continued to apply their power, and kept walking away from Colorado. The 2V8 didn’t have as great of a race. The majority of the boat was sick, so they had a hard time keeping the rate and power. They held off Colorado for the first 750 meters, but couldn’t keep up the fight. They ended up with a 6:49, 10 seconds behind Colorado.

The N8 had a really good race. They beat the two clubs in their race, Oregon and Colorado. They were 3 seconds ahead of Oregon and 5 seconds ahead of Colorado with a 6:31 final time. They ended 4th in their race, behind the 3 varsity programs they were racing. Stroke seat Brennan Jordan said that “It was good, fast competition. We felt very good about closing the time gap between our N8 and the V8, and the novice were very excited to do their part to help win the Enquist Cup for the team.” The N4 had a tougher time. The only other club in their race was Oregon, and they ended up losing by about 30 seconds, with a 7:31. Head Coach Arthur Ericsson said that "The entire Novice team had a solid outing against UC Davis on Saturday morning.   The Novice 8 raced a new lineup for the first time. They hung within a length of OSU until the 1000 meter mark.  They executed a longer and more mature sprint in the last quarter of the race. " The Saturday morning piece was a practice that the novice did before the racing on Sunday.


Cougar Crew Lightweights at Dad Vail

By Sidney Cross


This has been a race filled wescrrekend for Cougar Crew, with the lightweight women at Dad Vail Regatta and the men at PAC-12s. The lightweight women had a good experience rowing on new water in Philadelphia. For the lightweight women at Dad Vail there was a change in the race start times due to poor weather conditions. This caused the lightweights to have their race moved to 12:08pm instead of the previous start time of 3:10pm on the Schuylkill River.

The race time was not the only change that occurred at Dad Vail, but there was a lineup change because of sudden illness that kept a girl from racing. This was very unfortunate but the lightweights powered through and with their new substitution of Alyx Powell for Katie Fowler.  Despite the new lineup change, choppy conditions and a couple crabs throughout the race the lightweights finished 5th, nearly a minute ahead of St. Thomas. Coxswain, Grace Montgomery said, “Given better conditions, I think we would have been more competitive with the other crews. We held even with Northwestern to the 1000 meter mark before a boat-stopping crab made us fall back. We are excited to have the chance to race against some of these same crews with our practiced lineup at ACRA.” The team is looking forward to racing at ACRAs in the next couple weeks, May 28-29, in the lightweight 4+ and two 2x. It will be nice to see what all crews will be able to bring to the table at such a level playing field.



Cougar Crew Goes to PAC-12s

By Ryan Mather-Haaland


This Sunday, Cougar Crew is racing at PAC-12s. Many of the top varsity and club programs from the west coast will be racing this weekend. Schools such as UW and OSU will be racing. Other clubs providing competition include Colorado. This year also marks a new aspect of the PAC-12 race. There is now a trophy that all of the club teams will compete for, marking them the best club on the west coast.

The Varsity's goal is to take down some of the varsity schools present at this event. They also hope to walk away with the club trophy, making WSU the first team to win this separate competition. The 2V8 is looking forward to racing Colorado, who is a club team that has been pulling similar times to their boat.

The novice are looking forward to another example of high level rowing. Novice Kris Lange said that “We're adding a few different guys into the boat and they should be able to add some power and experience into the boat” and that after their race against Stanford “we're all really hungry to see how we can close that gap and push ahead of them.” The novice are testing several lineups for ACRAs, to see how new people do in their boats.

Head Coach Arthur Ericsson is as excited as ever for PAC-12s. He says that “The goal is to put pieces together to create 2000 meters of high level boat speed. We always are faster at nationals when we take on PAC-12's."


9 AM V4
9:30 AM N8
10:30 AM 2V8
11 AM 1V8

PAC-12 Line-upsClick to View

The Lightweights go to a New Race: Dad Vails

By Sidney Cross


This weekend Cougar Crew will be making history by sending their lightweight women to Philadelphia for the Dad Vail Regatta. The Dad Vail Regatta was started in 1934 and has been held continuously except for WWII years. Now in 2016 this regatta hosts over 128 schools, making Dad Vail the largest collegiate regatta in North America. The Dad Vail Regatta was started by two men with ties to rowing at the University of Pennsylvania. The individuals were “‘Rusty’ Callow and Lev Brett. Callow was then coach at Penn and laid the foundation. Brett was credited with being the architect. Their goal was to have a college regatta for developing crew programs” (Harry Stinger), which hits home for the lightweight women since their program is still developing and will now begin giving rowing opportunities to open weight women. The boat that is racing this year in the lightweight category is the varsity lightweight women’s 4+. Unfortunately, there are not enough lightweight 4+ boats entered to run heat racing, so there will only be a straight final, but the girls are all excited to be racing down on this historic course. The Dad Vail course holds a special challenge for coxswain Grace Montgomery since it incorporates a gradual turn before the 1500m, which is not usually present in sprint-style races. Overall the lightweights are looking forward to be racing other competitive lightweight women’s programs, especially ones that they have never raced in the past. The lightweight 4+ will be racing against Ithaca College, MIT, Northeastern University, Purdue and the University of St. Thomas. Coxswain Grace Montgomery is excited about this weekend, “After a bronze finish at WIRA, our boat has spent the last couple weeks adding speed and fine-tuning our race strategy. I think we’re all excited to how we stack up against some of these funded lightweight programs from the East coast. We are ready for the challenge that these other crews will bring on Saturday and we are looking forward to a strong, competitive race for our first appearance at Dad Vail!” The lightweight women’s 4+ will be racing at 3:10pm ET on Saturday, May 14 in lane 5. For those of you on the East coast that are interested in coming to Dad Vail, the best place to watch is from the Grand Stand on Kelly Drive.


4-Rachel Crowther
3-Katie Fowler
2-Simone Parker
1-Ashley Vu
Cox- Grace Montgomery

Cougar Crew Brings Home Several WIRAs medals

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland and Tabitha Wheeler


This last weekend Cougar Crew went to WIRAs. On Saturday, the wind was awful. It was blowing at about 25 mph with 40 mph gusts. Halfway through the day the races were cancelled. Petite and Third finals from that day were cancelled while heats and Grands from Saturday were moved to Sunday. Sunday turned out to be a very nice day, perfect for racing.

The V8 needed a 2nd place finish to advance to Grands, but unfortunately finished in 3rd. They were about 8 seconds behind Davis, who got second. At the 300 meter mark in Petite finals the V8 was neck and neck with UCLA, fighting for second. UCLA pushed harder and edged out our V8 by 6 tenths of a second, landing the V8 in third in the Petite finals, which is 9th overall. The JV8 had a similar result in heats. They needed 3rd to go to Grands since there were fewer boats than in the V8’s race. The JV crew were right next to USCB’s B boat for the first 1500 meters, but as soon as USCB started their sprint the JV8 declined to fight back and ended up in 4th place, sending them to Petites. In Petites, the JV8 was determined to prove that it belonged in Grands. They spent most of the race dueling San Diego for 1st place, but pulled ahead with about 700 meters to go. They ended in first in Petites by about 6 seconds, putting them in 7th overall. The double didn’t have as great of a race. The two athletes had only been training together for a few weeks, so they weren’t expecting to do too well. They ended in last. Coach Hurley said “The Varsity had a disappointing showing this weekend.  The next two weeks are crucial to regaining our speed.  The JV had an excellent weekend, highlighted by a 1st place finish in the petite final.  Their comparative time would have placed them 5th in the Grand.  They also exit the regatta as the 2nd fastest club JV8 on the west coast as they prepare for the National Championships.”

The men’s 1N8 raced impressively in their heat. They got 2nd place, sending them to Grands. In the finals, the novice seemed to lose some of their usual speed. They took 5th place, losing to 1st by about 10 seconds. They were 3 seconds behind the next closest boat. The 2N8 also took 2nd in their heat, sending them to Grands as well. In Grands the 2N8 got 3rd place. The novice were very excited to return home wearing medals. Rower Jacob Anderson said that “The 2N8 had a great weekend at WIRA's. Before our first race, our practice of the lineup felt strong and synchronized. Even in the rough wind-chop on Saturday, we took 2nd, qualifying us for finals. It helps that the rough water felt so natural to us from rowing the Snake all year. In the finals Sunday, we have everything we wanted; keeping up with Orange Coast and UCSB till the 1000. Our finish felt strong and our bronze medal left us grinning ear to ear as coach placed one around each of our necks.” The N4 didn’t race as well as the other boats. They ended in 5th in their heat, and unfortunately they didn’t get a second chance since their final was one of the ones cancelled. Coach Ericsson said that “The 1st Novice 8 lacked their usual energy.  They got a wake up call; better now than at nationals.  The 2nd Novice 8 delivered their best race and earned their bronze medal.  Both crews are the 3rd best club team on the west coast."

Two of the four Lightweight Women’s boats received medals at this years WIRA, with just one lineup in a lightweight category race. The wind Saturday pushed our girls events to Sunday, this made for some strategic changes to the race plan.

The D2/D3 Women’s V8+ heats were the first races of the day. The V8+ raced thirds against UCD. It was a fast race for our lightweights and although they did not win it was great competition.

The second event for the lightweight women was the Women’s 2x. Two boats, Tabitha Wheeler, Alyx Powell, along with Sidney Cross, Hannah Wilson, went down the course very strong. Wheeler and Powell came in close second to Long Beach by 0.9 seconds and receive their first medal together, silver. Cross and Wilson crossed the line fourth, 8.5 seconds faster than the next boat, Chico.

Lastly, the Lightweight 4+ raced hard against other lightweights and came in third at 8:30.1, with bronze medals. These ladies gave it their all in the 3rd five hundred when they got open water over Chico.

Click here for full results: WIRA_Results

Cougar Crew is headed to WIRAs

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland and Tabitha Wheeler

This weekend Cougar Crew will compete at WIRAS. This is one of the biggest races of the year, since it involves teams from all across the west coast. 

The varsity men are looking forward to another chance to race. They haven't been satisfied with the results so far, so this will give them another chance to show what they've got. John Dorscher said that "As a senior and this being one of my last few races I hope to put down some great times with the V8 and make other crews scared that they are racing us." The rest of the athletes are just as ready. The varsity will be racing two 8s, a V8 and a JV8. They are also racing a double. 

The novice are definitely excited for the racing season to reach its peak. Zeke Nelson said that "It is a race we have been told to prepare for since the first week of joining crew. Every one of us has had it on our minds with every practice, every race. Everyone in the boat is  determined to pull up to that start line, take one look at all the fast boats around us, and then keep them in our sights all the way through the finish line. We are ready, we have worked hard, we are hungry." The novice have shown how fast they are at Stanford and San Diego, and they have only gained more speed after those races. The novice will race a 1N8, a 2N8, and a 1N4. 

Arthur Ericsson said "This race is a well deserved highlight to all of those who have put in the hard work and stuck it out.  Coming off the Stanford Invitational our 1N8 is in a strong position to medal.  The 2N8 (silver 2015) has the right ingredients to be equally competitive.  They are somewhat untested and they'll need to be ready for the heats on Saturday."

The Lightweight Women’s 8+ will be racing in the Women’s D2/D3 Club heats Saturday at 2 p.m. in lane 4. Our women will race against WWU-lane 1, PLU-lane 2, L&C-lane 3, and SON-lane 5. The finals for the women’s 8+ are Sunday between 11:50 a.m. and 12:10 p.m.

The Lightweight Women’s A and B 2xs are racing Sunday at 8:30 a.m. Lanes are as follows, WSU A, LBS, CHICO, UCSB, CAL, PLU, and WSU B.

The Lightweight Women’s 4+ is racing Sunday at 9:50 a.m., lane 3, against CAL-lane 1, LBS-lane 2, and CHICO-lane 4.

Race times for Saturday are as follows:

V8: 2:30 pm 

JV8: 12:40 pm

1N8: 12:00 pm

2N8: 9:50 am

1N4: 8:30 am

VLTW8: 2:00 pm


Varsity (from cox to bow):
c. Alyssa Kodama

John Dorscher
Michael Sheremet
Michael Marelli
Ryan Krastins
Zach Morgan
Donovan Labriola
August Boyle
Josh Benson

c. Melissa Arneson

Jake Brisson
Rynn McGinnis
Griffin Berger
Matt Elliott
Jayson Beech
Ryan Gehring
Ryan Haaland
Alex Ashton

Patrick Abercrombie
Ryan Haaland

Novice (from bow to cox):

Zeke Nelson
Nate Endebrock
Noah Brandt
Kris Lange
Sean Cornia
Tanner Olson
Sam Callan
Devon McCornack

  1. Raquel Guerra-Lewis

Jacob Anderson
Kurin Pandher
Alec Palander
Kyle North
Ben Jakeman
Nathaniel Herrera
Blake Bryson
Brennan Jordan

  1. Ridge Peterson

Jakob Gilmartin
Kurin Pandher
Tarren McDaniel
Jacob Herman

  1. Hilary Zuniga

Lightweight women (from bow to cox):  

Hannah Wilson
Teresa Nguyen
Ashley Vu
Allison Thomas
Simone Parker
Alyx Powell
Tabitha Wheeler
Rachel Crowther

  1.   Sidney Cross

Ashley Vu
Simone Parker
Katie Fowler
Rachel Crowther

  1.   Grace Montgomery

Sidney Cross
Hannah Wilson

Tabitha Wheeler
Alyx Powell

Cougar Crew Speeds Up at Stanford

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


The Stanford Invitational was a very different race than most of the other regattas that Cougar Crew will compete in this spring. The racecourse is very narrow, only allowing two boats to race at a time. All of the races are duels, and each boat gets three different races.

The first race for the V8 went well. They were 4 seconds behind of Orange Coast, but they pulled a 6:13.3, their fastest time of the season. This motivated them to push even harder during their next race, where they pulled a 6:04.4 and beat UC Davis by about a second. They were ready to go even faster during their third race, but unfortunately caught a crab around the 200 meter mark. They recovered well but couldn’t catch up to the University of San Diego. Ryan Krastins said that “It was unfortunate, however, we are confident that we have unveiled our speed and potential here at the Stanford Invite.”

The 2V8 walked away from their races feeling unsatisfied. During their first race they rowed well but didn’t race hard. After a boat meeting they came up with a new race plan and were fired up for their second race. After a fast start they caught a boat-stopping crab at the 500 meter mark, which threw the whole boat off. After regaining boat speed, they raised the rate to a 38 and finished the race, but they had lost too much time to win. They started their third race just as aggressively and kept the rate up the entire time, but hadn’t practiced enough to win with their new strategy.

The novice found some speed this weekend. Their best time was a 6:18.8 when they raced Stanford. Even though they raced faster than ever before, Stanford’s experience allowed them to take the lead and win. The novice won their second race with a 6:22.0 vs UC Santa Barbara with a 6:23.4. They lost their third race against Santa Clara by about 4 seconds. Arthur Ericsson said that “All three novice races were solid. We raced strong from behind, side-by-side and from in the lead. Each race offered us a chance to make progress on an area of weakness. We have closed the gap on the top crews to the point where we are more driven than ever to overcome that gap.”

Full results:

First Time in Stanford

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


This weekend is a brand new regatta for Cougar Crew: the Stanford Invitational. This is a very unusual regatta, because all of the races will be duels. Once all of the teams get to town, the coaches will decide who they want to race and set up a schedule. Each boat will participate in three duels; two on Saturday and one on Sunday.

The varsity are really looking forward to another chance to prove themselves against other crews. Griffin Berger said that “Never before has WSU Men's Crew attended this regatta. This Stanford Invitational gives us the opportunity to see how we match up against many competitive crews that we will see at WIRAs and ACRAs. The duel style racing of this event will allow us to gain more racing experience than a traditional regatta and refine our racing strategy.” The varsity are also using the multiple Stanford races as a unique opportunity to seat race during real races instead of practice pieces.

The novice are as excited as ever for another chance to test their training. Devon McCornack said “I’m excited to get to be selected to go to Stanford this weekend. We saw them at San Diego but never got to the chance to battle it out head to head. All our novice boats have been getting faster and faster with each race and I believe that our lineup has potential to be very fast.” The novice are bringing several extra rowers to switch in and out to test various lineups, just like the varsity.

Coach Alec Hurley said “The Varsity enters Stanford on the heels of a solid performances at Washington.  The invitational offers a unique challenge for our squad as the duel race format should test both the Varsity and JV consistently and repeatedly.  The opportunities to smooth out our race plan as well as solidify internal competition for seats should allow us to finish a tough travel stretch on a high note.”

Unfortunately, lineups and race times are up in the air at this point. The Varsity rowers will race a different lineup every race to test different configurations during racing. The novice’s lineup is below. Several rowers will be substituting back and forth, but the majority of the rowers will stay the same. Since the schedule is decided by the coaches at the regatta it won’t be available until the last minute.

WSU races hard in annual UW duel

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


This weekend was WSU’s annual duel against the Huskies. OSU joined in several of the races as well. It was a great day for racing with sun in the sky and smooth water for the races.

The 1V8 felt like they rowed well, but it could have been better. Josh Benson said “From the start to across the line we raced at an uncomfortable rate. But we gave it our all for as long as we could and it showed.”  UW dropped WSU and OSU early on, but WSU stuck with OSU up to the 1000 meter mark. After this point, OSU started moving through WSU. The 2V8 didn’t think their race went as well. They had a new lineup, and weren’t used to rowing it yet. UW beat them off the line and kept increasing their lead throughout the race.

The novice’s races went well. The 1N8 was really fast off of the line, and kept up their speed throughout the race. They raced varsity crews from both UW and OSU, so they are excited to see what they can do against novice crews this coming weekend. The 2N8 rowed well and recovered after catching a crab. They were only 11 seconds off of our 1N8. Ben Jakeman said “I was anxious yet excited about the race. We rowed pretty well, despite our brutal mishap when we caught a crab and popped out the oar. In order to be better next race I feel like we just need to practice race speed more on the water so we can up our strokes per minute in hopes to swamp other teams.” As their skill increases, they will certainly pick up a significant amount of speed. The 3N8 was about 45 seconds off of the 2N8. They weren’t as happy with their race, but know that more practice will help their technique.

Coach Arthur Ericsson is very pleased with how his novice did. "Since last weekend in San Diego the 1N8 closed the gap by 13 seconds on a very fast OSU freshman 3V, and had competitive margins with our varsity lineups.  The 2N8 has been finding recent speed and confidence posting a time within 11 seconds of our 1N8.  Both crews showed impressive determination to push themselves all the way to the finish line despite trailing in the races."

Cougar Crew Heads to Seattle

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


This saturday Cougar Crew is racing one of their biggest rivals, UW. UW is always one of the fastest teams in the country, so this will be a huge challenge for both the varsity and novice. OSU will be competing as well.

The varsity is looking forward to having a good race.  Michael Sheremet said that “We experienced some rough waters in san diego that tossed us around a bit, hopefully seattle weather will be more friendly and the race will reflect what our boat can do.” So far, the V8 hasn’t been satisfied with a race. They will focus on improving their race plan during this duel, so that they can move into the rest of the season more confident than ever. The JV8 is itching to race again, since their last battle was against Gonzaga. They felt like they raced well during the Fawley cup, but want to get a few more races under their belt before the bigger races of the season.

Varsity coach Alec Hurley is excited to use this race as an opportunity to tune the varsity boats. He said that "The trip to Seattle will offer the varsity a chance to address a primary aspect of their training. Speed off the line will be of critical importance this weekend.  How the crew handles this will determine the success of the weekend." This will be the last smaller race, and the last race of the season in Washington. After the UW duel, the team will be going to California and Georgia for several big races, so they will need to be ready to go at that point.

This will be the first time the novice have seen UW in action. Brennan Jordan said that "I'm very excited to see what our boats can do against a very high caliber program. It's my first race back this season after some health issues, so I'm very excited about rowing on the Montlake Cut this weekend."

Race times are as follows:

9:15am 2N8 & 3N8

9:45am 2V8

10:35am 1N8

11:05am 1V8

Cougs Fight Hard at San Diego

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


This last weekend Cougar Crew raced in the San Diego Crew Classic. This is always one of the toughest races the team participates in, but they raced hard and fast.

On Saturday, the V8 raced in the first heat. They ended 4th with a time of 6:23.9. The winner, Temple, had a time of 6:08.2. This moved the V8 on to petite finals the next day. The V8 raced well in the petite finals. They ended in 4th with a 6:47.4. The winner was San Diego, who was only 13 seconds ahead with a 6:34.5. Ryan Krastins said that “We were able to fight off teams like UCLA and Notre Dame but still ended in 4th in both races.  Each race ended up being seated accurately but we aim to hit practice hard when we get back and increase our competitiveness for our upcoming regattas.” This race showed the V8 how far they have come this season and how much more work they have to do before their next big race.

The novice raced in the first heat of their race as well. They got 2nd with a time of 6:53.7, losing only to California who had a time of 6:16.3. This advanced the novice to grand finals; a great opportunity during their first large race. Unfortunately the novice got 6th in the grand finals with a time of 7:05.2. The next closest boat, Orange Coast, had a time of 6:52.4. The winner, California, ended with a 6:16.1. Noah Brandt said that “Nobody expected us to do that well and I think we did something historic by making it to the Grand Finals. We came into it ranked 12th place out of 15 teams and got 6th place overall in the end” It was a great experience for the novice to see that every race is anyone’s race; as long as you put in the effort it is possible to beat much higher ranked school.

Head Coach Arthur Ericsson said that “It was historic for the Novice 8 to have made the grand finals. The team went in as the underdogs based on Saturday’s heats but closed the time gaps on Michigan and OCC. With a strong start and aggressive strategy they are now a more competent and competitive team on the road to nationals." Both teams are getting faster and more confident as the season goes on. They have nowhere to go but up.

Go here for full results:


Husky Open Recap

By Tabitha Wheeler


The light weight women came home smiling after the Husky Open, Saturday. While neither of the girl’s boats came in first place, they were able to hold their own against open weight women from varsity programs. Coach Giles Dakin-White was very pleased with their performance, especially the novice. 


The varsity 4+ placed 2nd in the WV4+ at 8:21.52, just 5.18 seconds behind Lewis and Clark, beating Puget Sound by 30.1 seconds. Stroke seat, Rachel Crowther, said the race was very exciting because they were holding with Lewis and Clark the whole time.


The novice/varsity mix 8+ came 4th in the W3V8+ at 8:18.24. The start was strong and Washington State was head to head with Pacific University until PU edged passed about 1,100 meters into the race. PU held off the lightweights and came in third, 5.94 seconds ahead.

Cougar Crew Faces Stiff Competition

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


Cougar Crew is headed to their first big regatta of the season, the San Diego Crew Classic. This is some of the season’s toughest competition. Over 4,000 rowers will be in San Diego for more than 100 different races.

Varsity rower Zach Morgan said “I'm excited for this year's Crew Classic in San Diego.  Personally, it will be my first appearance in San Diego, as well as my first appearance for a regatta this large.  I'm eager to prove myself in our V8 lineup and do our best as a boat.  I expect to do well in our category, although from what I've heard San Diego Crew Classic can be a challenging venue with very competitive schools in attendance.  Either way, I'm just excited to be going!”

Going to a regatta this big will be a new experience for the novice. It will open their eyes to how big the sport of rowing is, and how tough they will have to fight to bring home medals. Novice Tanner Olson said “The San Diego crew classic will be our second novice 2k race of the spring season. We have been working very hard as a team over the long winter break and had a very successful spring training. I believe that our novice boat has a the ability to do great things this weekend rowing against some of the best novice crew teams in the nation.”

The coaches are always excited to pit their rowers against such tough opponents. Arthur Ericsson said "It's exciting to arrive on the grand stage of the San Diego Crew Classic from our insulated Inland Northwest region. We don't know how we will compare, but we have done the work and it will be just as much our race as anyone else's."

Watch the race here:

The live stream costs $15 for the weekend.

The race schedule is below. More information will be posted once the heats are seeded.

Race Schedule:

V8 heats 7:20/7:28/7:36am

N8 heats 10:44/10:52/11:00am

Finals based on results in heats:

V8 3rd final 3:20am

N8 3rd final 4:00pm

N8 petite final 4:08pm

SU (approximate schedule based on 2015)

N8 grand final 9:28am

V8 grand final 10:00am

V8 petite final 11:00am

Husky Open

By: Tabitha Wheeler


The Lightweight Women are attending the Husky Open at the University of Washington for the second year in a row. Race day is Saturday, April 2.

Varsity are sending a confident 4+, similar to their silver medal ACRA lineup from 2015 with one substitution. These girls have rowed together for more than a year, two of which have for four years in a row. Their goal is to take this boat to WIRA and put up a fight for gold.

Novice and junior varsity are racing a mixed 8+ with some promise. The girls’ ability and technique range from three weeks on the water to almost three years. A majority of the rowers are first-year oarsmen in their second semester. Inclusive teamwork has brought Cougar Crew’s newest recruits up to race pace in this short time.

Race times and lineups are as follows:

8:15 a.m. Lane 2

Varsity 4+

  1.   Sidney Cross
  2.   Ashley Vu
  3.   Simone Parker
  4.   Katie Fowler
  5.   Rachel Crowther


8:45 a.m. Lane 1

Novice/Junior Varsity 8+

  1.   Megan Eske
  2.   Alex Tomas
  3.   Lilly Trujilo
  4.   Natalie Ferguson
  5.   Hannah Wilson
  6.   Teresa Nguyen
  7.   Tabitha Wheeler
  8.   Alyx Powell
  9.   Grace Montgomery

Cougs Race Well at the Fawley Cup

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


On Saturday, Cougar Crew raced Gonzaga to defend the Fawley Cup. The Cougs have won for the last few years, and were excited for another chance to race Gonzaga. Unfortunately, both varsity boats lost. The V8 started slightly behind, but were walking back towards Gonzaga around the 600 meter mark. Unfortunately, at this point the V8 caught a boat-stopping crab that derailed their momentum and they weren’t able to come back. They lost by about 20 seconds. August Boyle said “We're disappointed but looking forward to our next opportunity to race in San Diego.”

The JV8 raced well throughout the piece, but just weren’t fast enough to keep up with Gonzaga’s boat. They lost by about 20 seconds as well. The rowers agreed that they all did their best, and are looking forward to future races together. Their trust in each other greatly increased, which will help them row even faster for everyone in the boat.

Coach Hurley’s takeaway from the weekend is: “The task before us is to learn from the lessons taught to us by Gonzaga. A brief two weeks of training precedes an exciting three week stretch of racing.” He knows that the first race of the season is a time to work out a few kinks, and that both boats will only get faster and stronger throughout the year.

The novice put up a great fight against the novice crew from Gonzaga. As the novice rowed by the boathouse, everyone on shore was excited to see WSU in the lead. Right after they passed the boathouse, the stroke seat caught a major crab. The rest of the boat wasn’t sure what to do, and stopped rowing for a few strokes to let their stroke get back into the rhythm. Novice Blake Bryson was happy with his first 2k on the water, and said “We started off strong at the beginning. The 1000m mark came and went super quick. The 1000-1500m mark seemed to take longer but we were motivated to finish the race. We wanted our gonzaga tanks. Then at the 500m mark the set got wonky and we began to row badly as a boat. This led to a race losing crab that ended in our defeat.” Even with this setback, the novice picked it up again and finished strong. They only lost to Gonzaga by 7 seconds.

The 2N8 raced as the 3V8, since WSU didn’t have enough varsity to challenge the 3V8 that Gonzaga brought. They raced as hard as they could, but their inexperience showed and they ended 25 seconds after Gonzaga. Arthur Ericsson said “Despite the losses, both Novice lineups should be proud of their effort and positive attitude following their first spring race. They showed speed, aggression and endurance and we now have clear aspects to develop as we move forward.”


It's Time for the Annual Fawley Cup

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


This weekend is the last time this season that Cougar Crew will duel their biggest rival, Gonzaga. This weekend is historic, as it is the first time in over a decade that WSU could win the Fawley cup for the third time in a row. This means a lot to the varsity, as this will really show Gonzaga that WSU is the faster crew.

Cougar Crew has been training hard to bring down Gonzaga. This last week has been their annual spring training. The team has used this time to practice several race techniques that they will use in their fight against Gonzaga, including the start sequence and sprint they will use in the race.

Even though the novice are new to the team, they have already picked up on the rivalry against Gonzaga. They know that this will be a tough fight against a more experienced crew, but are ready for the challenge. Nate Herrrera said, "I have really high hopes for this race and want to put all the spring break training to good use by beating Gonzaga." Coxswain Raquel Guerra is excited as well, and chipped in with "Our team has put in so much work since our last regatta against Gonzaga. I am so excited for them to see what we can do."

Both the varsity and novice will race two boats. Races begin at 1:00pm.

Cougar Crew comes to Tri-Cities for Spring Break Training

By Ryan Mather-Haaland


Every year, the Cougar Crew team spends their spring break training. For the past few years the team has stayed at home at Washington State University. The team has recently been looking for an opportunity to do something different, and decided to go to the WSU campus in the Tri-Cities to complete their annual spring break training. The team will stay in classrooms on campus during their training. They will arrive Monday morning and leave Thursday afternoon, giving them four full days to row. Everyone will train twice a day; once in the morning and once in the afternoon.

This training camp will really help the team focus on their workouts. The training camp will also help the team save time and get more practice in. The trip to the Cougar Crew team’s boathouse from campus takes about thirty minutes. In the Tri-Cities the team will be right on the water, so they can go out to practice several times a day. This means that they can run intense pieces several times a day with long recovery periods in between the workouts.

This week of training is very important for Cougar Crew. The team’s biggest rival, Gonzaga, is coming to Pullman on the Saturday after the training camp to race Cougar Crew. The Cougs have beat Gonzaga for the last two years in their annual duel. They have been training hard to defend their title, and will use this training camp to gain the speed needed to win a third year in a row.

Head coach Arthur Ericsson is very excited about this training camp. He has taken the team in the past, but it has been several years and he is hoping to establish this as a team tradition once again. Arthur said “Spring break training is the launch pad into the competitive race season- it's important to create that mindset by changing the routine and rowing on a body of water designated for this purpose. It further helps to create a unique experience and lasting memories. We always felt welcomed by our sister campus and it's good to bridge that connection and plant the seed for them to start their own rowing team!"

Cougars Bring the Challenge to Gonzaga

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


The Cougars put in a strong showing this year at the annual erg duel, but ultimately lost to Gonzaga. The winners were the team with the best average of the 2000 meter and 1500 meter pieces. Even though the Cougs lost, this is even more encouragement for the rowers to train hard for the Fawley Cup in three weeks, the next race with Gonzaga.

The erg duel always starts out very quiet. Right before each race, everyone stops talking and rowers stop warming up. Every person in the room is focused on the rowers about to race. The rowers are sitting ready on their ergs, eyes fixed on the screens as they wait for the countdown to begin. As soon as the countdown hits zero, each rower pulls hard to get their erg going. The cheering starts slowly, and picks up as the rowers get farther and farther into the race. By the final sprint every rower has someone standing behind them encouraging them to row faster and pass the guy ahead of them by only five meters. Once the race ends, the rowers either lie on the floor, exhausted, or go find water and food.

Coach Alec Hurley said “Today was a good indicator of how we handled our first competitive environment. The Varsity has work to do with regard to raw power, but demonstrated sufficient toughness on the 1500m pieces. Our task will be to translate that toughness into boat speed over the next month.”

The erg duel is always the first race for the novice who join in spring instead of fall. Kyle North is one of these novice experiencing a regatta for the first time. He pulled hard and could hardly stand right after the race. He said ”I thought it was exciting in the minutes leading up to the race because everybody was getting into their peak mental and physical zones to compete. I was aware of the how intense the competition would be after seeing how exhausted some of the guys were after their race. It made me better because it's really impossible to know what to expect until you experience it.”


Cougars Once Again Challenge Gonzaga

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


This Saturday, February 27th is the first spring race for WSU Cougar Crew. The team is travelling to Gonzaga for the annual erg duel between the two teams. All rowers will compete in a 2000m race on the ergs, followed by a 1500m several hours later. This weekend marks the third of four races with Gonzaga this year. The Fawley Cup will happen in March and is the last time the two teams will compete on the water this spring.

The Men’s team recently finished their indoor winter training. They’ve been on the water for about two weeks now, but are excited to show off the strength they gained on the ergs. Junior August Boyle said “Erg duel is a great way to see how we stack up against Gonzaga, and it's especially important this year with Fawley Cup coming earlier than usual"

The novice are also looking forward to another chance to prove themselves. Freshman Devon McCornack said that “I’m excited to see how our group of first year oarsmen will match up to guys who have been rowing for several years. I think we can put up some competitive scores and we are all ready to show these varsity programs what we are capable of.”

Head Coach Arthur Ericsson knows that the novice will do well as long as they relax and don't get too worked up over their first 2000m race of the season. “This event is always gets the best of some guys mentally.  They should just leave their minds in Pullman.  All they need to do is pull like they do in practice and they'll be able to give strong results on both pieces."

The first flight begins at 8:30 am.


Cougars Race Hard to End Season

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


On Saturday morning, the Cougars raced Gonzaga on our home course. There was a tailwind all the way down the course, which helped speed the boats along.

The 1V8 rowed hard to hold off Gonzaga throughout the race, but unfortunately Gonzaga was still able to pass them at the end.  The V8 rowed their fastest time of the season, coming in at 15:47, 22 seconds behind Gonzaga. Michael Marelli said “We raced hard and stayed on pace with them for most of the race, but in the end Gonzaga showed up as the faster crew. I look forward to racing them again come spring.”

The 2V8 also lost to Gonzaga. They held off Gonzaga for the first half of the race, but Gonzaga started walking through them during the second half. The 2V8 pushed it and didn’t allow Gonzaga to pass them, and only lost by 11 seconds.

The 1N8 put up a good fight against Gonzaga as well. They pulled their first race under 17 minutes, coming in at 16:58. Even though this was the best they raced all season, they still came in behind Gonzaga’s novice.

The 2N8 had a tougher race than the 1N8. Right off of the starting line, they caught two crabs. They pulled it together to finish the race, but lost to Gonzaga by 1:39.

The 3N8 was the first time the novice raced a lightweight boat. They came in last, 3 minutes behind Gonzaga's 2N8. Even though they were behind, they were very pleased with the race. Stroke seat Jacob Anderson said “The Novice lightweight boat pulled their weight. There was not one man in their who wasn't stroking down the snake with everything they had. Expect to see us after winter stronger than ever before.”

Head coach Arthur thinks that the novice have had a great fall. He said "I am happy with the effort and the improvement made each week and each race.  And I'm also pleased that we have more than three 8's of dedicated novice; depth in numbers and teamwork." He is excited to see what the novice will be able to do in the spring.

This was the team’s last race before winter. Over the next several months, they will train indoors. The next race is the annual erg dual against Gonzaga.

Cougars Defend Home Course

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


This weekend marks the end of the fall racing season for Cougar Crew.

On Saturday, Gonzaga is coming to duel the Cougars on our home course, the Snake River.

The varsity will race two 8’s. They will also race four 4’s.

Coach Hurley thinks that the Varsity will do well against their rival, and said “There's really no better way to finish the fall than on one's home water against your rival. The Varsity is excited to get a final test against Gonzaga in the eights - our last preview before the Fawley Cup in early March.  The fours racing should be exciting as it offers a preview for the seat racing and selection process for the top eights over the winter and spring.”

The novice have really enjoyed their time on the water this fall. Connor Skaggs said “The set keeps getting better, and every race in the novice A is better than the last. For 8 fairly big guys, we're all very comfortable around higher rates. Everybody has something they can work on, and we're confident we can take off at least 30 seconds from our 5k time.” The novice have been looking strong throughout the season, and are sure to benefit from being on a familiar course for their last race.

The schedule is still being discussed by the head coaches of Cougar Crew and Gonzaga’s rowing program. The current plan is to start the racing at 10:00am, but this is subject to change. The schedule will be posted as soon as it is finalized, so stay tuned for more information!

Cougars Race Tough Competition at the Head of the Lake

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland and Tabitha Wheeler


This past Sunday morning the Cougars raced at the Head of the Lake. The Head of the Lake is a somewhat difficult course to navigate, with a tight turn into Montlake Cut and a very long turn coming into the finish line.

The 1V8+ rowed well against stiff competition. They got 5th out of 7, losing to top schools such as UW and Stanford. Their time was 17:38.

The 2V8+ finished 8th out of 9. Bow seat Ryan Mather-Haaland said “We were really motivated at the end of the race when one of Stanford’s boats came up behind us and tried to pass. We rowed hard throughout, but really pushed it at the end.” They finished with a time of 18:40.

The 3V8+ finished 9th out of 11 with a time of 18:57. They beat one of rival Gonzaga’s boats.

The 4’s had good races as well. The 2V4+ got 10th with a time of 20:09. The 1V4+ got 11th, getting the same time. They had a great race, but unfortunately were penalized a minute for failing to yield to another boat.

Coach Hurley was happy with how the crews raced, saying "The Cougar Varsity executed well with regard to fundamental aspects of our training so far. The power was present in the top varsity 8+. When they had the opportunity to split into two varsity 4+s later in the day, they addressed issues of complacency and demonstrated solid depth and competitiveness within the top varsity.”

The men are excited for their next race this coming weekend. All of their experience this fall has gotten them ready to race Gonzaga one final time this season.

The lightweight women made a tough run of Head of the Lake this year. Conditions were poor as wind and rain got stronger throughout the morning, and the Cut became a sloshing washing machine. Despite this and other setbacks the girls proved once again that they work well under pressure in adverse situations.

The varsity 4+ sporting a single novice placed seventh out of eight with a time of 23:41. Right after the ladies exited the Cut, bow seat Katie Fowler felt some abnormalities with her rigger and found she had lost her top nut. For the duration of the race she set the boat to not cause damage to the rigger. This made the turn at the end of the course quite challenging but these girls pulled through.

The lightweight double finished fifth in the Women's Open 2x. Wheeler and Montgomery are still beginners in the sculling trade and remain hard workers in the hopes of becoming a competitive lineup. First timer on the course Wheeler says she "was distracted with where they were going," but if they were to do it again they would come out on top. Every experience is a learning experience.


Cougar Crew Steps Up for the Head of the Lake

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland and Tabitha Wheeler


Despite working a fundraiser in Pullman until 5:00pm, Cougar Crew will be racing a slew of boats at the Head of the Lake regatta in Seattle this Sunday morning.  The 5000m headrace from Lake Union to Lake Washington starts at 8:00am.

The Head of the Lake is a great chance for the Cougars to race some of the top teams on the west coast. UW will be our biggest opponent. Other boats in the races include Gonzaga, Oregon State, U Victoria, British Columbia, and Stanford.

The men’s team will bring three 8’s with 8 athletes doubling up and rowing in two 4’s as well. The 1V4+ will be composed of the four athletes from the stern of the 1V8+. The 2V4+ will be composed of three athletes from the bow of the 1V8+ and one from the 2V8+.

Head Coach Arthur Ericsson said of the 3V8+ “They've all had solid rows in fours and as an eight have now begun rowing like an A boat with set, ratio and power” and that “The scale and caliber of this regatta is an important part of the development process for our team to be competitive."

The lightweight women will be finishing their Fall season at Head of the Lake, with the opportunity to test themselves against all levels of competition.

The women’s varsity four will race in the 4+ event against funded programs from UW and the University of Portland, as well as club rivals Oregon and Union Bay.

The women’s varsity double will be the program's first sculling entry in this regatta. The double will take on a pair of crews from Canadian university Fraser Valley and some experienced masters entries.

Lightweight Coach Giles Dakin-White says "This year's HotL is quite an adventure for us. Circumstances with the V4 have seen some late lineup shuffling and lack of water time, but the crew seems determined to lay down the power and upset some heavyweight programs. The 2x is a new venture for us, adding sculling to our repertoire, and Grace and Tabitha have been working hard to lead the charge of WSU Lightweight sculling."

The men’s 1V8+ and 2V8+ will race at 8:00am. The 3V8+ races at 8:13am. The men’s 4’s race at 10:00am. The women’s lightweight 1V4+ will race at 8:45am. The women’s 2x will race at 10:44am.

Cougs Dominate at the Charlie Brown Regatta

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland and Tabitha Wheeler


This last weekend, the men’s novice and lightweight women raced in the Charlie Brown regatta on the Willamette river. It was classic Portland weather, with a cool morning and calm water.

The novice rowed well in the 8s. The novice A boat got first place by 44 seconds. The novice B boat caught a crab right at the beginning, but they quickly recovered and rowed well for the rest of the race. They ended in 3rd, 11 seconds behind the Lewis and Clark boat in second and 55 seconds behind the WSU A novice boat. The novice C boat was late to the starting line, and ended up racing with no other boats on the course. Without the motivation of catching other crews, they finished 2 minutes and 4 seconds behind the novice B boat. They beat UPS by a technicality, since UPS missed a buoy and was penalized 1 minute.

After racing in the 8s, most of the novice returned to the water in 4s. They were tired at the start, but motivated each other to do well throughout the race. The heavyweight 4A got first place. The lightweight 4A finished 2nd, 52 seconds behind the heavy 4A. They were rowing well until UPS came too close and the boats clashed oars. Unfortunately, they came to a complete stop in the final turn before the finish line. UPS finished in 3rd. The lightweight 4B finished in 4th behind UPS. Right after the starting line their bow seat’s foot stretchers broke, but they continued to row as hard as they could. Blake Bryson was pleased with the row, and said that “We were all shouting at each other and the adrenaline was super high. It’s probably the best race I ever rowed.” The heavyweight 4B finished in 5th place.

Coach Arthur Ericsson said that “Every day they are finding chunks of boat speed in all kinds of ways.” It is apparent from their racing that the novice are getting faster and more confident on the water.

The Lightweight Women had a good run at Charlie Brown. The WLT4+ finished first with a 1:19 minute lead over second place, UPS. The ladies looked strong across the finish and will continue to work on power. WLTN4+ crossed the line third only 33 seconds off UPS’s stern. Our girls were on course to take UPS’s 4+ when a rogue men’s 8+ pushed them to the outside of a turn under the bridge. They lost time getting back on course, but we are proud of our girls ability to adapt in adverse situations.

On that note, our WLTV2x came second to Lewis and Clark’s WV2x after a cruiser came down the course during the small boats race. Montgomery and Wheeler continue to train hard in the double in preparation for Head of the Lake in Seattle. Overall, the lightweight ladies are happy with their progress as they get more races under their belts.

Rowing the Willamette for the Charlie Brown Regatta

By: Ryan Mather-Haaland and Tabitha Wheeler


The Charlie Brown is a Regatta held on the Willamette River in Portland, Oregon. It is slightly shorter than traditional fall races at only 4,500 meters. A new race for both the men and women of Cougar Crew, it’s another opportunity to get the novice into the racing spirit and gauge where we sit with other crews in the area.

Unfortunately, the varsity men will not be able to race. They are staying in Pullman to fundraise. Only the novice will represent the men.

The novice men are bringing 3 full 8s, as well as 2 lightweight 4s and 2 heavyweight 4s. Many of the novice will hotseat to make this possible, giving them a very full day of racing.

The novice are excited. They think that the Head of the Spokane was a great start, but they are ready to do even better. Sam Callan said, “Our last race in Spokane broke us into the racing mentality that we need to perform well and along with several fixes made from Spokane’s race we are ready to bring the competition to Portland.” They have been rowing well during practice, and are sure to put in a strong effort this coming weekend.

The Lightweight Women are taking a Varsity 4+, Novice 4+, and Varsity 2x. None of these lineups have been raced before, so the girls are being put to the test to work together and pull out the speed.

Second year oarsmen Grace Montgomery and Tabitha Wheeler have been learning to scull this fall season. Wheeler says, “We’ve worked hard, learned fast, and are ready to see what our effort can bring us.”

Fourth year oarsman, Simone Parker, feels confident in her V4+ lineup despite adding novice Alyx Powell to the mix. “Three out of the four of us have rowed together for years now and although we have a novice in our boat I am more than confident in her abilities.” The ultimate goal is to “have a good row and feel great coming off the water.”

Competition will include U of O, Lewis and Clark, Pacific Lutheran, and U of Puget Sound.

The novice men’s 8s, WLTV4+ and WLTN4+ will start racing at 10:00am; the men’s 4s and WLTV2x will race at 11:45am. The race will be this Saturday, October 24th. The boathouse teams will be racing at is at Oaks Park in SE Portland.



By: Ryan Mather-Haaland


On a cold Sunday, the first WSU Men’s Crew boat raced at the Head of the Charles. The first place boat was NTC, with a time of 14:49.841. The Cougars finished last, with a time of 16:42.310. They were 2:39.029 behind the top boat.

Even though the Cougs didn’t do well overall, they raced really well. They fought through very inconsistent headwinds and navigated the previously unknown course without error. Each rower had length and power during every stroke, and pushed themselves down the entire course. The men also beat their time at Head of the Spokane by 10 seconds, even though there were many adverse conditions. The lightweights learned their lesson at Gonzaga, and applied what they learned in Boston.

After the race, coach Hurley said, “I thought we rowed well. The points of emphasis we addressed in training were clearly present. The east coast programs merely offered our young crew a lesson in elite level racing. A lesson we will be happy to pass along to our west coast competition.” The Cougars won’t see many of these crews again this year, but it was a great opportunity to see how top schools race.

Overall, it was an amazing opportunity. Griffin Berger said, “It was an honor to compete against high end ivy league schools” and that “it was a great experience and everyone loved it.” Everyone who went is thankful for the opportunity they were given, and will take this experience with them through the rest of their rowing career.


First Time in Boston

By Ryan Mather-Haaland


For the first time in the history of Cougar Crew, a boat is being sent to the Head of the Charles head race in Boston. Last spring, the men’s LWT 8 and LWT 4 both won their respective events at WIRAs. After getting back, Coach Arthur decided that if Washington State has the fastest lightweight program on the west coast then it should mix it up with the powerhouse east coast schools and in the process put WSU on the map for lightweight rowing.

The Head of the Charles is the largest two-day rowing event in the world. It is a very prestigious race for Cougar Crew to participate in. The course starts at Boston University’s boathouse and finishes near Northeastern University’s boathouse. It is known as a difficult course for crews to properly navigate.

The rowers and coach who are attending think that this is a great opportunity for the team. Coach Hurley said that “this race provides the young Cougar Crew with invaluable race experience” since it is such a large event. Rower Nick Jaeger said that he is excited to go since “our boat gets to represent our team in one of the biggest regattas there is for the first time” and that “when we are not racing we get the chance to watch the top teams race each other.” This will be an opportunity to see teams that Cougar Crew hasn’t seen before. Teams from the top schools around the country show up, as well as some national teams.

Coach Hurley thinks that the lightweights are ready to race. He has said that they “have shown high caliber speed during practice and have excelled on the ergs.” His question for them is “What story do you wish to write in Boston?” If the men race as hard as they have been practicing, they are sure to add to the strong history of Cougar Crew.

The team is getting a new lightweight 8 in Boston, and the men will race this new boat.

The lightweights will race at 4:06 pm pacific time. Their bow number will be 16 out of 17.

Stay tuned on facebook for a link to watch the race!


Cougars Came Close to Gonzaga

By Ryan Mather-Haaland and Tabitha Wheeler


Conditions were great as the first few boats started racing. It was nice and warm when the varsity launched, and they raced with calm water and little wind. The Cougar 1V8+ lost by 27 seconds to the Gonzaga 1V8+. Gonzaga’s 1V8+ was a heavyweight boat, but the WSU 1V8+ for this race was the lightweight 8 that will be going to Boston for Head of the Charles this coming weekend. It was a good tune-up for them to race their lineup before Boston.

In the 2V8+ event the Cougars won by 3 seconds. The Cougar heavyweight varsity eight was raced in this event.

In the 3V8+ event, 2 alumni, John Gehring and Curtis Treiber, filled in the lineup. The boat did well for not having rowed the lineup before the race, They lost by 1:25.

Novice put up a good fight as well. As they came around the last corner into the final 1500 meters of the race the wind started to pick up and gave the novice a challenge as they worked through the headwind.  Even with the conditions, the novice looked strong coming across the finish line. The 1N8+ lost by 2:18.

The 2N8+ caught up to the 1N8+ at the end of the race. They finished with a time 15 seconds faster than the 1N8+, and only lost to Gonzaga by 7 seconds. Novice Sean Cornia said, “For a first race we had a really good set” and that the rowing felt strong and smooth, but that it hurt a lot more than he expected it to.

The 3N8+ finished last with a time of 20:51, which was 1:12 behind the 2N8+.

Cougar Crew’s LWT women’s V4+ went down the course in 22:31, only 20 seconds behind WSU’s openweight novice women. The girls were using this race as a practice run for Head of the Lake in the upcoming weeks. Katie Fowler, the V4+’s bow seat, reports their boat “was able to naturally row together without struggle and maintain power,” what they are really looking to accomplish is “fine tuning and overall fitness.”

As the LWT women’s 2V8+ was made up of six novice and two varsity it was really a practice run to show these ladies what they’re in for and help whip them into shape. With a finishing time of 0:24:23 the girls came in sixth out of six against WSU’s and Gonzaga’s novice men. Novice Alyx Powell spoke out about the girls new found appreciation for hand calluses and the beauty of the water.

The LW2x scratched their race.

Cougars First Race Against Gonzaga

By Ryan Mather-Haaland and Tabitha Wheeler


Cougar Crew’s first big race is coming this Saturday, October 10th, as the team heads to Spokane for the annual Head of the Spokane. This is a 5000m headrace run as time trials against both the clock and the crews in front and behind you on the course.

Two weeks ago the novice and varsity from the lightweight women’s and men’s teams created mixed lineups to race the Pend Oreille in Idaho. This coming race will be more traditional as the novice and varsity men and women are in separate lineups. Coach Arthur said of the novice, “We have the ingredients for each novice 8 to put together a solid race.  I hope that we can avoid the most common errors that afflict novice crews in their first race.”

We are excited to see the varsity men’s progress as this is their first race under new coach, Alec Hurley. The men won the Fawley cup against Gonzaga last spring and are hoping to continue their success through this year.

Although the Lightweight Women have diminished numbers, they strive for quality over quantity racing their varsity in small boats and one novice eight.

The races will start at 9:15am.


A Great First Outing

By Ryan Mather-Haaland


The crew team got back from its first big event on Sunday afternoon. They spent the weekend camping and racing in Pend Orielle, Idaho.

The camping trip was fun for the whole team. Everyone got plenty of time to meet others on the team. It was a great opportunity for the novice and varsity rowers to get to spend some time together and get to know each other.

Unfortunately, there was an injury during the trip. Novice and varsity buddies have traditionally arm wrestled as a way to meet. During one match-up, one of the novice, Dylan, had his arm broken. He was taken to the emergency room. Dylan was in good spirits after getting back from the hospital, and said that he would like to participate in as many team activities as he could while recovering. He should be able to fully rejoin the team for spring racing.

The races were on Saturday, but unfortunately they got canceled partway through. The first flight of crews made it about 4,000 meters down the 5,000 meter course when the race officials said that conditions were too bad at the finish line and the boats needed to go back to the boat launch.

Novice coxswain Raquel Guerra-Lewis said that, “Even though the water was really bad, there is nothing else I would rather have been doing that day than getting soaked in the cox seat getting my boat through the race” All of the rowers had fun, but wished that they could have finished the race.

The canceled races gave the team plenty of time in the afternoon to relax and have fun at the campground. Novice Kurin Pandlher said that it was great getting closer to the rest of the team, and that “to me it feels good knowing that these guys and girls will be with me this year and more.”

Head of the Pend Orielle and Team

Camping Trip

By Ryan Mather-Haaland

Cougar Crew's first big event is coming up. The team is spending the weekend camping near Priest River, Idaho. The varsity and novice from both the men and lightweight women's teams are going, which will give everyone a great chance to get to know each other. This is the time that every novice member gets assigned a varsity buddy, which will give them someone to help them out with rowing and school questions that they might have.

On Saturday, everyone will race their first 5k of the season. It will be a great low-pressure first race for the novice so that they know what to expect when the team heads to Gonzaga on October 10th. Arthur has created lineups that mix novice and varsity men and women to bring everyone closer together as they move into the year.

After the races, each team will present the history of their boat to everyone else on the trip.

The first boat to race will be the lightweight women’s 2x at 10:25am. The first four eights will race at 10:40am, and the second set of three eights will race at 12:10pm.