TUSCALOOSA, AL. – On the heels of a standout performance at the San Diego Crew Classic, the Alabama rowing team's First Varsity 8+ earned the inaugural Conference USA Boat of the Week honor the league office announced today.
"This is icing on the cake of a really great weekend for Alabama rowing," UA head coach Larry Davis said. "To have the rest of the conference recognize the job that we did and the fact that we really stepped it up in our first trip to the San Diego Crew Classic is quite satisfying."
The Crimson Tide earned the award after winning the SeaWorld Cal Cup in its first appearance at the prestigious San Diego Crew Classic with a time of 6:56.90. Through prelims and finals, Alabama beat C-USA members Tulsa, SMU and Kansas State, among the other boats.
The Alabama First Varsity 8+ of coxswain Paige Storey, Alissa Kranz, Laura Skaggs, Kristen Iverson, Jessica Allaway, Mariah Styer, Bianca Arrington, Jennifer Johnson and Jessica Parker beat second-place Tulsa by more than a second and was half a length ahead of Kansas State in the Grand Final.
"I'm happy for the ladies in that boat, but I'm happy for the team as well," Davis said. "Because this award shows that other people recognize that we're doing good things here at Alabama."
The San Diego Crew Classic is billed as "America's Premier Spring Regatta" and is held on Crown Point Shores on Mission Bay.
Alabama joined Conference USA as an affiliate member last season, combining with the three full-time C-USA members that sponsor women's rowing - SMU, Tulsa and Central Florida - and five additional programs that also serve as affiliate members - Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas.
The Tide returns to action this Saturday in its lone home regatta of the season when it takes on C-USA foe Central Florida starting at 11:30 a.m. on the Black Warrior River. Fans will be able to watch the races from The Park at Manderson Landing. Due to Saturday's triathlon, access to The Park will come from McCorvey Drive, which goes through the University of Alabama Campus.