Friday, December 9

UCLA rowing defeats Loyola Marymount in last home race of season

UCLA rowing's first varsity eight boat rows down the creek in its race against Loyola Marymount. The Bruins defeated the Lions in every race Saturday, including a 26.50-second victory from the first varsity eight boat. (David Rimer/Assistant Photo editor)

This post was updated April 17 at 8:56 p.m.

In their final home race of the season, the Bruins raced faster than every boat their opponent put on the water.

UCLA rowing (1-1) beat Loyola Marymount in all four races Saturday at the Marina Aquatic Center. In the second varsity four race, UCLA’s second varsity four boat came in first place above two other Bruin boats and surpassed LMU’s fourth-place boat by over 45 seconds; all races were decided by a margin of at least 15 seconds

Interim head coach Previn Chandraratna said the supportive home environment helped propel UCLA to victory.

“It’s a fantastic experience to be home in front of our friends and family,” Chandraratna said. “You could literally see the energy on the water as the boats passed through the crowd, so it was super fun.”

UCLA held the advantage over LMU from the very beginning, as all three of its boats in the second varsity four race finished ahead of the Lions’ second varsity four boat. In the first varsity four race, the Bruins claimed another victory, finishing the race with a time of 8:12.20 to the Lions’ 8:36.40.

Chandraratna said a key part of the team’s success was its efforts to keep its pace through the middle part of the race.

“Our focus was on being really strong through the middle 1,000 (meters) from 500 in to 500 to-go,” Chandraratna said. “You could see that they really surged during that period.”

UCLA’s second varsity eight boat continued the Bruins’ winning streak on the day, notching a 15.60-second victory over LMU.

One of the largest margins of victory on the day came from UCLA’s first varsity eight boat, which crossed the finish 26.50 seconds before LMU’s to finish the race with a time of 7:03.20. The win came a month after the Bruins’ first varsity eight boat defeated USC by 1.44 seconds.

Senior starboard Lucy Holgate said UCLA has its eye on big things for the remainder of 2022.

“For the rest of the season, we’re always looking to gain speed going into every race … going into Pac-12s, and then with the goal of NCAAs,” Holgate said.

After the race, UCLA celebrated its last home appearance of the season with friends and family, as multiple Bruins gave speeches about what rowing and the UCLA community have meant to them.

“Every single stroke, you’re pulling for the person in front of you,” said senior port/starboard Danielle Hoekstra. “There’s nothing that you wouldn’t do for them. You put your body on the line for them, and you know they’ve got your back.”

Chandraratna also said the Bruins owe their accomplishments to the camaraderie and supportive atmosphere they have created.

“I truly believe that community and kinship contribute to speed when the rowers connect with each other and believe in each other,” Chandraratna said. “When the going gets tough, they really, really push hard.”

UCLA will compete in its final races before the Pac-12 championships at the Longhorn Invitational on April 29 and April 30 in Austin, Texas.

Sports contributor

Trimbell is currently a contributor on the gymnastics and rowing beats.

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