April 13, 2014
FOLSOM, Calif. – The University of Notre Dame rowing team logged three runner-up finishes on the final day of racing on Sunday at the Lake Natoma Invitational, earning a fifth-place result after earning six total team points during the weekend regatta. The No. 9 Irish were only three points behind invitational winner and national No. 1 team California, who took the event championship with nine race points scored.
“More important than anything else at this time of the year is to try to learn, and to try to race better,” Notre Dame head coach Martin Stone said. “It was probably as good of a field, if not better, than we thought going in. I thought that the (varsity) four did a really good job, and I thought the 2V8 did well. We changed the lineup around between Saturday morning and afternoon, and I think that added a little bit of speed.”
Notre Dame’s first varsity four began Sunday’s racing against No. 7 Stanford and No. 20 San Diego, and posted its third solid showing of the weekend. Coxswain Mikaela Prego, Bailey Amenabar, Stella Willoughby, Kelsey Sekanick and Emily Horton clocked a final weekend heat time of 7:25.20 to finish just behind the victorious Stanford crew (7:23.00). San Diego took third place with a time of 7:37.90.
Stanford added its second win of the day in the second varsity eight competition later in the morning, posting a top time of 6:34.20. Notre Dame’s lineup of coxswain Alex Techar, Sarah Kappers, Carlee Beckler, Katie Skorcz, Alexis Olson, Ellen Gleadow, Rose Doerfler, Hilary Shinnick and Kiersten DeHaven took runner-up honors in 6:43.00, followed by San Diego at 6:57.50.
It was a clean sweep for the Cardinal on the day in Group B, as the Stanford varsity eight claimed the race victory with a final time of 6:24.70. The Irish entry of coxswain Christina Dines, Teresa Rubinger, Joanna Mulvey, Courtney Gaberino, Elizabeth Kelley, Anna Kottkamp, Ailish Sheehan, Erin Boxberger and Molly Bruggeman chipped in another solid team finish, traversing the course in 6:29.80. San Diego was third in 6:39.50.
“The 1V against Cal on Saturday, we might have dropped the ball a little, but Sunday against Stanford was better,” Stone said. “We still have a lot of work to do, and it’s not getting any easier. We go this weekend to race Michigan and Ohio State, who will both be in the top 10 by the end of the week. It’s good for us, and I think we are learning about ourselves, I just think we have to make some adjustments pretty quickly.”
Notre Dame will next compete in the ACC-Big Ten Challenge on April 19 on Belleville Lake in Belleville, Mich.