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Women’s Rowing: Varsity shell earns victory

Cory Bernard | Monday, November 1, 2010

Notre Dame defeated Tulsa in Friday and Saturday’s time-trial races on the Saint Joseph’s River. On Friday, the Irish defeated the Golden Hurricane in the varsity eight head race, and on Saturday the top varsity four boat claimed victory in the stake race.

The shell consisting of coxswain Abby Meyers and crew senior Paige White, junior Katie Suyo, Olivia Kacsits, Molly Bruggeman, senior Genevieve Malone, senior Carol Ann Michel, senior Emily Crosby and sophomore Stephanie O’Neill crossed the line at 14:13.1 on Friday. They edged Tulsa’s first varsity eight boat, which clocked in at 14:19.2.

Coach Martin Stone left the weekend’s races saying he wished his team rowed faster, but said he was pleased with the effort it took for his varsity eight to take first place.

“I’m pleased we won,” he said. “I would’ve like to go faster as always. We were down early to Tulsa’s first eight, but we came back late.”

Saturday morning saw the Irish varsity four boat, coxed by junior Jacqueline Gilhooly and crewed by Malone, Michel, Crosby and O’Neill finish with a time of 11:37.6. Tulsa’s “A” and “B” shells finished second in 11:38.7 and third in 11:57.8, respectively.

Stone said his teams handling of the unusual turn in Saturday’s race was the key to an Irish victory in the event.

“The fours went out and raced in a very odd format, one we don’t normally see collegiately,” Stone said. “The most critical part is the 180 degree spin around the buoy, and we handled that part better than Tulsa did.”

Stone also said he is not concerned with his team being too top-heavy, as both Friday and Saturday’s time trials saw and Irish varsity shells take first, with Tulsa claiming second and third.

“Our 2v and 3v rode well,” Stone said. “The depth is fine, I’m not concerned.”

Another possible concern for Notre Dame going into the regatta with Tulsa was some left-over rustiness following the mid-semester week off. However, the Irish were able to overcome the time off to beat the Golden Hurricane.

“We didn’t look that good last week,” Stone said. “We didn’t stay during Fall Break, and historically it takes us a little while to get back into it, but we did a nice job.”

With half of the fall season now complete, the Irish can look forward to a match-up against Indiana University Sunday.

“The format is more like a controlled scrimmage than a full-out race,” Stone said. “It will help us transition to more of a spring season mode.”

Races begin next weekend in Indianapolis, Ind., at 11 a.m.