Texas looks ahead to Big 12 Championships after win over Ohio State

Aneesh Namburi

The strong performances from Texas Rowing continued over the weekend with its defeat of No. 6 Ohio State. 

The Buckeyes are considered in the upper echelon of rowing teams around the country, as they have won the last six Big Ten titles. These two teams also have some shared recent history, as Texas finished ahead of the Buckeyes in the 2018 NCAA Championships to take third, while Ohio State finished in sixth place. 

For the first time all season, Texas swept its opponent. Longhorns head coach Dave O’Neill emphasized the importance of the victory and how impressed he was with the team’s progress throughout the season. 

“Winning these four races against Ohio State on their home course is certainly a big accomplishment. We have a ton of respect for their program, and today shows the progress we’ve made,” O’Neill said.

Nevertheless, the victories were not earned without difficulties. The race was almost derailed due to predicted floods and was moved up a day earlier than its original scheduled time of Saturday. Ironically, Columbus faced some of the same weather problems as the Longhorns back home, but the team was able to prevail and “make the most of it,” despite only having a few hours notice before the races began, O’Neill said. 

The first eight had another strong performance, finishing with a time of 5:54.50, just over five seconds faster than the Buckeyes.

“The first eight has made some good improvements, and they showed some decent speed today,” O’Neill said following the event.

While the second eight’s race was relatively closer, the unit still won commandingly with a time of 6:05.30, almost three seconds ahead of Ohio State. The same could be said for the first four, which crossed the finish line at a time of 6:44.90.

Arguably the biggest surprise of the day was the second four, which not only beat the first four’s time by over the three seconds, but finished the race almost 12 seconds ahead of Ohio State. O’Neill certainly took notice of the second four’s dominance.

“They established a solid lead early and never let up,” O’Neill said of the second four. “They pushed to the very end, and that result was certainly noticed.”

While the Longhorns have this weekend off, their next race will surely not be out of their minds as they are preparing for the Big 12 Championship on May 18.