July 10, 2012
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Former University of Notre Dame rower Amanda Polk, as well as rising junior Molly Bruggeman, have been selected to represent various levels of the United States Rowing teams this summer, it was announced by U.S. Rowing recently.
Polk, who has been training with the U.S. Rowing team since earning a spot on the U-23 team in '08, will represent the United States at the 2012 London Olympic Games after earning a spot as a sculling and starboard side alternate with the U.S. Olympic Rowing Team. She has been a member of the U.S. Senior National Team since '09. Bruggeman, meanwhile, earned a seat with the U-23 team that will head to the World Championships this summer in Trakai, Lithuania.
While at Notre Dame, Polk was selected as a Division I First-Team All-American from 2006-08 and a Second-Team All-American in 2005. She also was named CRCA First-Team All-Central Region from 2006-08, and earned a first-team CRCA All-Region nomination in 2005. Polk was a 2005 Big East Academic All-Star as well.
During her time with the U.S. Rowing Team, Polk has claimed six gold medals in international competition, including five as a member of the women's eight boat. Prior to joining the eights, Polk helped the Under-23 eight boat capture gold at the '08 FISA World Rowing Championships in Brandenburg, Germany. Additionally, she helped the U.S. women's four to a silver medal at the '10 World Championships in Poznan, Poland.
"I am honored to be the first Notre Dame rower to represent the USA at the Olympic level," expressed Polk. "I am humbled by the support of my family and the Notre Dame community especially from my Notre Dame coaches Martin Stone, Marnie Stahl, and Joe Schlosberg. In 2004 when I was first accepted into the Notre Dame family, I was coincidentally also accepted into the US Rowing family on the Junior National Team. Since then, I have contributed to building the Notre Dame Rowing Program and in doing so it has rewarded me with the right tools to earn a spot on the Olympic team. Row Irish! Go USA!"
Following in Polk's wake is current Notre Dame junior Molly Bruggeman, who has been named to the U-23 US Team. Bruggeman has been training at the U-23 National Team Camp the past month in Syracuse, N.Y., and hopes to make a similar impact with the team as Polk did when they head to the World Championships from July 11-15 in Trakai, Lithuania.
"Being selected to represent the United States and Notre Dame at the U-23 World Championships in Trakai is a great honor in itself," stated Bruggeman. "It's been such a cool experience rowing with an incredibly talented group of women from all over the country. It just affirms my goal of one day making it onto the Senior National Team and following in the footsteps of Amanda Polk, who has been one of my biggest role models."
Bruggeman has been busy the past year with the Fighting Irish, earning recognition as a CRCA First Team Pocock All-American - becoming the first Irish rower to receive that honor since Polk following her '08 season. On the year, Bruggeman earned CRCA first-team, all-region recognition at the end of May after rowing with the varsity eight and helping the team earn a berth to the NCAA Championship for the first time since `07. She and her boat finished 16th at the NCAAs with a Third Final time of 6:40.33.