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Huskies break out sprint races in Husky Open sweep

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The Washington rowing teams added sprint races to the Husky Open this year. Washington boats won both the men's and women's sprints — along with every other collegiate race of the day.

On one of the prettiest spring days of the year so far, the Washington crew teams broke out their brooms and swept the local competition on the Montlake Cut in every collegiate race.

Additionally, the Huskies added a new wrinkle to their Husky Open activities, implementing a 500-meter sprint race at the beginning and end of the collegiate races to prep for Windermere Cup runs toward the back-half of the season.

“We wanted to test drive them, because we’re planning to do them at Windermere,” women’s head coach Yaz Farooq said. “The Husky Open was a perfect event for us to be able to stage a sprint race, because you have waves and a rowback.”

The sprint races only included UW teams, but the men’s side had the “black” boat win with a time of 1:26.92, and the “purple” boat finishing just behind at 1:27.40 in near-perfect conditions.

The women wrapped up collegiate races with the first varsity eight winning, followed by the second varsity, freshman, and third varsity boats.

“What a perfect day, it was unbelievable,” Farooq said. “The sun was out, it was perfectly flat. Conditions were excellent, it was an awesome day to watching a race on Montlake Cut.”

As for the races that actually counted, the Huskies continued their undefeated start to the year with a perfect sweep in all scoring races.

The women won all five races they competed in, led by the first varsity eight victory over the Huskies’ second varsity eight in the top collegiate race with a time of 6:14.957. The second varsity finished 13 seconds behind the top boat in second place.

On the men’s side, the Huskies won all races they competed in as well, led by the men’s third varsity eight, which competed in the first varsity race and won easily with a time of 5:43.965. Additionally, the men’s freshman boat put in a good performance by competing in the second varsity eight and winning with a time of 5:48.177. The next best boat finished over 20 seconds behind the frosh boat.

“It was good, it was good for the freshmen to get out there,” freshman cox Thomas Wenk said. “We just need to get out of our own heads and get out there and feel loose.”

On the heels of finals and with spring break in full swing, the Huskies are now firmly looking ahead to their spring season and hoping for yet another national championship run.

“There’s definitely a shift during spring break,” Wenk said. “Once my finals were over, everything shifts towards rowing, and getting ready for this weekend and beyond.”

Reach Sports Editor Alec Dietz at Twitter: @AlecDietz

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