The U.S. women’s eight saw its winning streak end at the 2017 World Rowing Cup II in Poznan, Poland, on Sunday as the crew raced to a third-place finish behind New Zealand and Great Britain.
According to event announcers, it was the first time the U.S. women’s eight boat did not win the event since finishing second at the 2013 World Rowing Cup in Sydney, Australia.
The Americans entered the race undefeated at the world championship and Olympic event level since 2006. This was their first time competing since winning gold in Rio in 2016, although just one member of that crew was in the boat on Sunday.
The crew consisted of coxswain Katelin (Snyder) Guregian, 2016 Olympic gold medalist Emily Regan, 2016 Olympic alternate Vicky Opitz, Kendall Chase, Meghan Wheeler, Erin Boxberger, Kristine O’Brien, Molly Bruggeman, and 2016 Olympian in the women’s quad, Grace Latz.
The U.S. boat fell behind early on and was running in fourth place at 500 meters as the crew from Great Britain jumped out to an early lead. As New Zealand pushed ahead in the second half of the race, the Americans fought back into medal contention, passing China 1 to move into third, but could not catch either of the first two boats, finishing 2.78 seconds behind New Zealand (6:01.27).
Team USA entered two boats in the A finals of the women’s four, and the crew of Erin Reelick, Sarah Dougherty, Kelly Pierce and Coco Schoeller finished in second place with a time of 6:25.53, just behind the winning boat from Australia with a time of 6:22.65.
The United States also earned a podium finish in the women’s pair A final with three-time Olympian Megan Kalmoe and 2016 Olympian Tracy Eisser taking second place (6:54.61) behind New Zealand (6:49.08).