MIAMI BEACH, Fla. -- Barry won both races Saturday in the Barry-Nova Dual on the intracoastal waterway.

The Buccaneers Varsity 8 of coxswain Gracie Horwitz, stroke Kristina Boncheva, Anna Boada, Rosita Boncheva, Monika Kaminska, Bethany Desmond, Anais Foppoli, Emma Howard and bow Kelly Harrison beat the Sharks with a time of 6:44.9 on the 2,000 meter course. Nova Southeastern finished in 6:56.7.

Last year's race between the two 8s came down to a photo finish, with host Nova Southeastern winning by .04 seconds in Hollywood, Fla.

"It's easy to be jazzed up for this race," Harrison said. "I don't think anybody felt nervous. We were just talking about putting ourselves in a good position."

"It felt really comfortable," Boncheva said. "We just started really confident. We made a decision to race really fast. There wasn't any hesitation or lows."

The Bucs Varsity 4 of coxswain Angela Dasch, stroke Kasia Walentynowicz, Helene Pierre, Mandy Carper and bow Rebekah Kilroy won with a time of 7:54.3. Nova Southeastern crossed the finish in 7:59.8.

In a tight race during the final 500 meters, the Bucs 4 pulled away at the end.

"The 4 did a good job of pushing [on Saturday]. Both boats did a good job of pushing," Barry coach Dave Sanderson said. "There were really no dead spots in the race [Saturday]. They did a really good job of racing the full 2,000 meters. I think both boats were very focused and raced very aggressively. We tried to work on some very specific things in practice throughout the week, and then we were able to translate that into good racing."

Throughout the week, as is the custom before every race, the Buccaneers ran through different scenarios and how to respond as they visualized the race playing itself out. After getting the result her team sought, Boncheva said the next step is to go faster.

"We'd like to go faster, at least a little, every race," she said.

"A few seconds doesn't seem like that much to everybody else, but it is," Harrison said.