May 22, 2006
Notre Dame, Ind. – The honors and accolades continued to come in for the Notre Dame rowing program with a record five rowers garnering all-Central Region honors by the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA).
After earning second team All-America honors in 2005, sophomore Amanda Polk (Pittsburgh, Pa.) was a repeat first-team selection, headling four first-team selections. Also earning first-team honors were classmate Julie Sobolewski (Haddonfield, N.J.), senior Sarah Palandech (Lakenheath, United Kingdom) and junior coxswain Maria Romano (River Forest, Ill.). In addition, senior Melissa Felker (Bellevue, Wash.) copped second-team honors.
Ohio State was the only other school from the Central Region to have five rowers earn regional honors. The Buckeyes placed two rowers on the first team and three rowers on the second team.
Polk, Sobolewski, Palandech, Felker and Romano are all members of Notre Dame’s record-setting varsity eight crew. After beginning the season, unranked the Irish finished fifth in the final Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association/US Rowing Poll, its highest ranking in school history after winning both the varsity eight races at the BIG EAST and South/Central Region championships. Notre Dame’s victory at the South/Central Region race was the first-ever for an Irish varsity eight crew. That same varsity eight crew also notched a fourth-place finish (best in school history) in the Jessop-Whittier Cup at the San Diego Crew Classic.
Polk, Palandech and Felker have rowed with the varsity eight crew each of the last two seasons.
Notre Dame’s season culminated with the Irish earning a team berth into this year’s 12-team NCAA championship field.