KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee women’s rowing team wrapped up its 2008 home schedule with two wins over Louisville on Saturday on Lake Loudoun. The Lady Vols downed the Cardinals in both the Varsity Eight and Second Varsity Eight events, while Louisville’s novices helped the Cardinals avoid the sweep.
For the sixth time in dual meet action, the Orange and White Varsity Eight topped the Cardinals, keeping the UT V8+ boat undefeated against U of L all-time. After getting out to nearly a boat-length lead through the first 1,750 meters, Tennessee’s crew of sophomore coxswain Katie Ross, senior Kendra Warren, junior Erin-Monique Shelton, junior Kate Brownlee, freshman Libu¹e Bruncvíkova’, sophomore Mary Beth Dreusike, and seniors Mary Jones and Jessica Ayers, fought off a strong Louisville push in the final 250 meters to earn the victory. The Lady Vols finished the course in 6:17.22, while the Cardinal shell crossed just three seconds later in 6:20.79.
Tennessee opened the meet with a one-two finish in the Second Varsity 8+ race. With no Varsity Four races being held, the Orange and White fielded two shells in the 2V8+ event. Midway through the course, UT’s “A” boat, coxed by sophomore Sydney Newman and manned by senior Renee Brittle, junior Caroline Howell, sophomores Laura Miller and Kate Snider, seniors Nina Dobratz and Genevieve Collins, junior Alex Shishkov and sophomore Brittany Sehring, took a commanding lead which it would not relinquish, completing the race in 6:32.58. Meanwhile, Tennessee’s “B” shell of junior coxswain Jessica Williams, freshman Rachel Dooley, sophomores Stephanie Hunley and Jewell Ludwigsen, senior Marisa Mohan, and freshmen RuthAnne Waldrop, Acacia Edmiston, Melissa Toms and Ruth Ann Johnson, battled Louisville to the very end, edging the Cardinal crew by less than two seconds.
U of L controlled the Novice 8+ race from the start, finishing in 6:59.7. Tennessee’s N8+ shell of freshman coxswain Stacey Blalock, freshmen Chelsie Scansen, Janie Prathammavong, Kayla Kmet, Leilani Young, Ashley Menner and Andrea Turner, junior Andrea Delgado and freshman Lora Aaron completed the course in 7:16.2.
Saturday’s event marked the final race on Lake Loudoun for nine Tennessee seniors. The 2008 senior class of Ayers, Brittle, Collins, Dobratz, Gearing, Jones, Mohan, Warren and Danielle Hmielewski has helped the Lady Vol program move into the upper echelon of collegiate rowing. In 2006, the Orange and White captured its first NCAA South Region title and its first full-team bid to NCAA Championships. Last year, the group helped push Tennessee to its second full-squad selection and highest finish in program history at the NCAA Championship event.
The Lady Vols will have a one-week break from competition before heading to Columbus, Ohio, on April 12. There, Tennessee will face off against Ohio State, Michigan and Southern California in a quad meet on the Scioto River.
|Second Varsity 8+|
|Newman [cox], Brittle, Howell, Miller, Snider, Dobratz, Collins, Shishkov, Sehring|
|J. Williams [cox], Dooley, Hunley, Ludwigsen, Mohan, Waldrop, Edmiston, Toms, Johnson|
|Blalock [cox], Scansen, Prathammavong, Kmet, Young, Menner, Turner, Delgado, Aaron|
|Ross [cox], Warren, Shelton, Brownlee, Bruncvíkova’, Dreusike, Gearing, Jones, Ayers|