April 11, 2015
FOLSOM, Calif. — With split session showdowns against a pair of top 10 foes, the University of Notre Dame rowing team faced a stiff challenge on day one of the Lake Natoma Invitational on Saturday. The Irish logged seven runner-up finishes in group racing during the opening day of the regatta on Lake Natoma.
No. 16 Notre Dame opened the morning session against co-host No. 3 California and Rhode Island in first varsity four racing. California raced to victory in 7:16.40, with the Irish lineup of coxswain Mikaela Prego, Bailey Amenabar, Elizabeth Walter, Meredith Swartz and Rose Doerfler taking second place in 7:21.50.
California added a second varsity eight victory in the next event on the water, crossing the finish line in 6:31.00. Coxswain Reilly Kearney, Elizabeth Gilbert, Emily Horton, Ellen Gleadow, Gretchen Bruggeman, Sarah Russel, Katie Skorcz, Hilary Shinnick and Madeline Loper logged a time of 6:44.10 to claim runner-up honors.
The Golden Bears earned a third straight crew win in the first varsity eight, rowing to a group one triumph in 6:18.40. The Notre Dame entry of coxswain Alex Techar, Carlee Beckler, Sarah Kappers, Catherine Wagner, Joanna Mulvey, Alexis Olson, Elizabeth Kelley, Anna Kottkamp and Ailish Sheehan crossed in 6:33.70 in second behind California.
In second varsity four racing to determine the afternoon finals order, Notre Dame placed second in its group just behind California to earn entry into the afternoon’s grand final. Coxswain Jill Ryan, Madelynn Conlin, Treasa O’Tighearnaigh, Katherine Lumetta and Megan McKeon clocked a preliminary time of 7:33.90 to advance to the event final.
Strong opposition also awaited Notre Dame during the Saturday afternoon session at Lake Natoma, with the Irish taking on No. 6 Stanford and co-host Sacramento State. Stanford took the first heat of the late session in the first varsity four, posting a winning time of 7:34.10. Notre Dame placed second with a final time of 7:45.80.
Stanford narrowly edged out a win during the second varsity eight, winning by less than two full seconds with a time of 6:54.60. The Irish second eight entry nearly caught the Cardinal crew, posting a readout of 6:56.10.
The first varsity eight of Stanford completed an afternoon sweep in the final NCAA race of the day, logging a winning 6:36.20 to take the event. Notre Dame cruised into second place with a time of 6:49.00.
In the second varsity four grand final, Notre Dame remained on the pace in a stacked field featuring ranked foes California, Stanford and No. 2 Brown. The Irish ultimately finished fourth in the heat with a time of 7:45.80.
The second and final day of racing at the Lake Natoma Invitational is set to begin on Sunday at 8 a.m. (PT). Live race results will be available on Twitter @NatomaInvite.
Lake Natoma Invitational — Saturday Races
No. 16 Notre Dame vs. No. 3 California vs. Rhode Island
No. 16 Notre Dame vs. No. 6 Stanford vs. Sacramento State