Rowing sweeps KU at annual Sunflower Showdown

Senior Kennedy Felice talks to senior coxswain Allie Kleinsmith after the 4K race at the Jayhawk Jamboree regatta on Oct. 21, 2018, in Lawrence. (Dalton Wainscott | Collegian Media Group )

The Kansas State rowing team faced off against the Kansas Jayhawks on Saturday at Wyandotte County Lake in the Sunflower Showdown and swept KU with a first-place finish in every race, earning 22 points throughout the day.

“The team continues to progress and improve,” head coach Patrick Sweeney said to K-State Sports. “Being able to perform when under the pressure of competition is always satisfying.”

K-State first swept KU in 2012, and the Wildcats have won the Sunflower Showdown in six of the last nine years.

The K-State 3v8+ was the first boat to compete, finishing with a time of 6:51.8. The Jayhawk boat came in at 7:06.2, giving the Wildcats a solid lead and putting two points on the scoreboard.

The K-State 2v4+ boat went second, finishing with a 7:22.9 victory and adding two more points to the board. This boat was followed up by the 1v4+ boat, adding three points to the board with a time of 7:11.3 and easily knocking off the Jayhawks, who had a time of 7:25.18.

As the Wildcats went into the second varsity eight race, they led 7-0. The 2v8+ boat took off, adding six more points to the board with its 6:28.7 win.

The 1v8+ boat, the last boat to race, barely won the matchup with a 6:23.6; the Jayhawks finished only one second behind at 6:24.7. This race gave the Wildcat crew nine points and a 22-0 win over KU.

This is the second consecutive win for K-State in the Sunflower Showdown.

The Wildcats will be spending the next few weeks preparing for two final regattas: the Big 12 Championship in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, on May 19 and the NCAA Championship in Indianapolis on May 31.

“I’m sure they are confident of going faster and again performing to achieve their best result,” Sweeney said to K-State Sports regarding the upcoming Big 12 Championship.

Molly Hackett
Hi, I'm Molly Hackett and I graduated with a Bachelor's of Science in broadcast journalism in May 2020. When I worked for the Collegian, I had a variety of different jobs, including managing editor and sports editor. Additionally, I served a one year term on the Collegian Media Group Board of Directors. I also worked for KKSU-TV and appeared as an anchor on MHK All Day during my final semester at K-State. In my free time, I like to spend time with the people closest to me, travel, drink coffee and take naps.