Head coach Martin Stone and the Irish are returning to the NCAA Championships for the first time since 2007.

Irish Rowing Signs Six Prep Student-Athletes

Dec. 22, 2009

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Irish rowing head coach Martin Stone has announced the signing of six student-athletes to National Letters of Intent. All six will enroll at the University of Notre Dame in the fall of 2010. Joining the Irish in 2010-11 to continue their athletic and academic careers will be: Molly Bruggeman (Dayton, Ohio), Kiersten DeHaven (Tampa, Fla.), Christina Dines (East Amherst, N.Y.), Olivia Kacsits (Rockford, Mich.), Elizabeth Linnemanstons (Mequon, Wis.) and Nicole Michels (Glenview, Ill.).

“We’re very excited about the class we signed and the contributions that they will make at Notre Dame during their four years,” Stone says. “This class is a great match in terms of overall fit for our program and how they will succeed athletically and academically and the contributions that they will make within the Notre Dame community. They each have good skills and strong rowing credentials and will add depth to our program. I really like class that our coaching staff assembled this year.”

Molly Bruggeman • 5-11 • Dayton, Ohio/Chaminade Julienne
Two-sport athlete for Chaminade Julienne High School (volleyball and crew) … rowed for the Dayton Boat Club, rowing stroke for the varsity four boat … boat has finished each of the past two campaigns ranked in the top five nationally … received the Dayton Boat Club’s “Competitors Award” in both her sophomore and junior years … competed with the U.S. Junior National CanAmMex team, rowing for the USA … current Irish rowers Genevieve Malone and Abby Meyers both rowed for the Dayton Boat Club (DBC) … member of both the National Honor Society and Student Government at her school … serves as co-vice president of Student Government … hails from a list of family members who have either attended Notre Dame or Saint Mary’s College dating back to the late 1940’s … father Mike is a 1981 graduate and mother Beth is a 1982 Saint Mary’s graduate … brother Matt will graduate in 2010 … another brother Patrick, plays football at Wittenberg University.

Stone on Bruggeman: “Molly is a great Notre Dame fit and comes from a tradition with strong ties to the University. She comes from a strong rowing background and has great experience in both high school and at the club level.”

Kiersten DeHaven • 5-8 • Tampa, Fla./Academy of the Holy Names
Two-sport athlete at the Academy of the Holy Names (volleyball and crew) … earned five varsity letters over the course of her four years … finished second and third place at the Head of the Hooch in 2008 and 2009, respectively, with her 2x (two-seat scull) boat … captured the 2x Florida state championship in April of 2009, as well as winning the Southeastern Regional title in May of 2009 … finished in sixth place at the Youth Nationals with the 2x in June of 2009 … participant of the Junior Women’s High Performance sculling camp in January of 2009 … member of the National Honor Society.

Stone on DeHaven: “Kiersten works extremely hard. In addition to rowing with her team, she also rows single sculls. She has great potential to grow within our program and will be one of those student-athletes who will have a great desire to improve throughout her time here. Kiersten is looking forward to coming to Notre Dame and we look forward to welcoming her to our program.”

Christina Dines • 5-3 • East Amherst, N.Y./Holy Angels Academy
Competed with the rowing team as a coxswain during her time at Holy Angels Academy, earning letters during her sophomore, junior and senior years … served as captain of team as a junior and was Coaches’ Leadership Award during her junior year … helped cox her boat to 16 top-five finishes since the 2007 season, including a race victory at the 2008 Fontana West Side Rowing Club with the women’s flyweight four … finished in eighth place at the 2009 SRAA Scholastic Nationals in the 21-boat field of the lightweight four … member of both the National Society of High School Scholars and Student Government … founder of the Big Sister, Little Sister program at Holy Angels in 2009.

Stone on Dines: “Christina is a very knowledgeable and skilled coxswain with experience at all levels. She is a very savvy and smart coxswain who really has a good understanding of the importance of her role in the boat. Christina enjoyed her Notre Dame experience on her recruiting visit and will be a fit here at the University.”

Olivia Kacsits • 5-11 • Rockford, Mich./Rockford
Has been a member of the rowing team all four years at Rockford High School … has earned a varsity letter each year of competition … helped her varsity four boat to national rankings in both her sophomore and junior seasons with her boat capturing regional and state titles during the junior season … took second place in the state with the varsity eight boat during junior year as well … boat has qualified for nationals twice, finishing in the top-10 both years … member of the National Honor Society as well as Youth Initiative (school community service club).

Stone on Kacsits: “Olivia has had great success primarily rowing with the fours. She has tremendous leadership potential and a great team leader. She could be a multi-faceted rower for us and wants the most out of her college experience at Notre Dame both athletically and academically.”

Elizabeth Linnemanstons • 5-11 • Mequon, Wis./Divine Savior Holy Angels
Three-sport athlete at Divine Savior Holy Angels High School, competing in basketball, rowing (club) and rugby (club) … undefeated in three seasons as member of rugby team, winning regional, state and national championships in each season as well … selected to the National U-19 rugby team but was unable to attend due to other sport conflicts … rows in the port position for her club rowing team during the summers … sister, Katherine, is a current member of the Irish Rowing team … former rower Kelsey Otero tennis player Katie Potts, attended the same high school … member of both the National Honor Society and Student Council.

Stone on Linnemanstons: “Elizabeth has great potential within our program. She is a good athlete and a strong competitor. Elizabeth is following a similar path to Notre Dame as her sister Katherine did. She is a bright, caring individual who will be a great asset to our program both on and off the waters.”

Nicole Michels • 5-8 • Glenview, Ill./Loyola Academy
Competed in three sports (rowing, soccer, cross country) at Loyola Academy, earning three varsity letters with the rowing program … has raced with the varsity eight since the spring of sophomore year … best results include 19th at the Head of the Charles in her junior year and 19th at the Scholastic Nationals in her sophomore season … boat placed third and second during her sophomore and junior years, respectively, at the Midwest Scholastics … member of the Dumbach Honors Program and National Honor Society … father Robert and mother Anne are both 1985 graduates of the University … National Merit Scholarship semifinalist.

Stone on Michels: “Nicole is a smart rower who comes from a strong rowing program in the Midwest. She has good technical skills and I am excited about her potential and what she will bring to our program. She, like the others, will be a great asset to our team.”

— ND —