Notre Dame enjoyed a successful week of training in Oak Ridge, Tenn.

Notre Dame Posts Strong Results In Spring Opener Against Boston University, Michigan State And Virginia

March 17, 2009

OAK RIDGE, TENN. – The Notre Dame rowing team opened up their spring schedule on Saturday, Mar. 14 against Boston University, Michigan State and Virginia. The races, which took place in Oak Ridge, Tenn., saw the Irish earn victories in two varsity eight races and one novice eight race. The Irish varsity four boats also earned two first-place finishes at the regatta.

The first varsity eight boat got the Irish off to a good start by winning the opening race for the Irish. The crew of coxswain Kelsey Otero (Mequon, Wis.), Casey Robinson (Alexandria, Va.), Katherine Linnemanstons (Mequon, Wis.), Megan Keegan (Marietta, Ohio), Christine Trezza (Staten Island, N.Y.), Morgan Kelley (Windermere, Fla.), Lauren Buck (Flint, Mich.), Brittney Kelly (Wexford, Pa.) and Anni Nowhitney (Ballston Spa, N.Y.) defeated Boston University’s first varsity boat in a close race, winning the five minute piece by one seat.

The second varsity eight crew kept the early Irish momentum going by defeating the Terriers second varsity eight crew in the next five-minute piece. The crew of coxswain Stephanie Szegedi (South Lyon, Mich.), Erica Copeland (Marietta, Ga.), Mallory Glass (Fernandina Beach, Fla.), Erika Shults (Maple Glen, Pa.), Carol Ann Michel (Princeton, N.J.), Erin McConnell (Simsbury, Conn.), Emily Backer (Cannelton, Ind.), Christina Buckley (Huntington, N.Y.) and Elli Greybar (Western Springs, Ill.) cruised to victory, capturing the race by open water at the end of the five minutes.

In the second session of varsity eight races on the day, Virginia, ranked sixth in the Collegiate Coaches Rowing Association (CRCA)/USRowing preseason poll, defeated the Irish in both of the heats. The first varsity eight boat, with the addition of Genevive Malone (Dayton, Ohio) sitting in for Keegan, fell to the Cavaliers by open water. The second varsity eight crew was also defeated by open water at the end of the five-minute piece.

The Irish, prior to their final varsity eight races of the day against preseason No. 7 Michigan State, flipped coxswains Szegedi and Otero and returned Keegan to the first varsity boat. The Spartans, however, were able to defeat the Irish in both races by open water.

The Irish varsity four boats raced well as Notre Dame raced two boats on the day. Notre Dame raced two boats on the day. The Notre Dame-A boat was comprised of coxswain Katherine McMackin (Chevy Chase, Md.), Stephanie Gretsch (Downers Grove, Ill.), Katie Suyo (Yardley, Pa.), Bridget Leone (Garden City, N.Y.) and Braegan Padley (Boise, Idaho). The Notre Dame-B boat saw the crew of coxswain Rachael Louie (Westfield, N.J.), Hannah Jackson (Moscow, Idaho), Lisa Bunn (Wilsonville, Ore.), Brianna Krafcik (Aurora, Ohio) and Andrea Archer (Redding, Conn.) for the race against Boston University, while Casey Sullivan (Wilmette, Ill) sat in for Krafcik in the races against Michigan State and Virginia.

In the first race, a five-minute piece against Boston University, the ND-A and ND-B boats took first and second over the Terriers A and B boats which finished third and fourth respectively.

The second session of varsity four races took place against Virginia in an approximate 1,400m race. The ND-A boat took first place handily with a final time of 5:13.34. Virginia-A was second with a 5:19.09 final time, and ND-B finished just behind with a final race time of 5:19.91. Virginia-B and -C rounded out the race by finishing in fourth and fifth respectively.

The varsity four races concluded against the Spartans in another five-minute piece. The MSU-A boat was able to win the race, with ND-A and -B crossing just after for second and third place respectively. The Spartans boat was able hold of the ND-A boat by one to two seats at the finish. The MSU-B boat rounded out the competition with a fourth place finish.

The Irish sent two boats out to compete in novice eight competition as well. The first boat was crewed by coxswain Alicia Elliott (Ambler, Pa.), Maria Lang (Harrison, Ohio), Tess Fitzpatrick (St. Louis, Mo.), Margot Debot (Stevens Point, Wis.), Megan Osterhout (Mundelein, Ill.), Valerie Brencher (Lumberton, N.J.), Kaitlyn Meaney (Ringgold, Ga.), Colleen McKenna (Ellicott City, Md.) and Kacey Gergely (Valparaiso, Ind.). The second novice eight boat sent out two combinations. The crew of coxswain Jacqueline Gilhooly (Palos Heights, Ill.), Erin Connors (Wellesley, Mass.), Ashley Satterlee (Carlisle, Pa.), Iraissa Ann Reilly (Egg Harbor, N.J.), Carly Anderson (Westford, Mass.), Meredith Figg (Indianapolis, Ind.), Shannon Kiernan (Glen Ridge, N.J.), Ching-Ting Hwang (Chesterfield, Mo.) and Claire Kueny (Richboro, Pa.) rowed against the University of Virginia, while Christina Carson (Carmel, Ind.) coxed in Gilhooly’s place against Boston University and Michigan State.

The first novice boat raced to a first-place finish against Boston University, while coming in second against both Virginia and Michigan State in the other races. The second novice eight boat crossed the line right after the ND-A boat against Boston University for a one-two finish. The Irish novice B boat claimed fourth place in both races against Virginia and Michigan State.

“We have a very good team that is going to get a lot better,” Irish head coach Martin Stone said. “I thought the (varsity) fours did a fantastic job and the novices also did very well.”

“Overall, I think we had a good training week. We are still working on evolving our lineups. All three schools (we faced) were ranked in the preseason top 20 poll that was released last week. We could see up to 15 of those programs by the time the regular season is completed in May. I told the team that although we are not ranked going into the season that we will have ample opportunity to race against the ranked crews.”

Notre Dame returns to the waters in two weekends when they head up to East Lansing, Mich. to take on Michigan State on Sat., Mar. 28 before concluding the weekend with a meet against Indiana and Purdue in Indianapolis, Ind. on Sun., Mar. 29.