No. 8 Cal Women's Crew Travels to NCAA Championships

May 23, 2007

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This Week: The Golden Bears women's crew has been selected to compete in the 2007 NCAA rowing championships. The regatta will be held May 25-27 on Melton Hill Lake in Oak Ridge, Tenn. The first women's national collegiate championship was held at the same venue in 1980. The No. 8 Bears return to Oak Ridge 27 years after winning their first national championship riding a pair of consecutive NCAA team championships. California won the inaugural national championship, then under the AIAW.

The Field: The 12 teams selected to appear in the team competition are No. 1 USC, No. 2 Yale, No. 3 Virginia, No. 4 Brown, No. 5 Ohio State, No. 6 Notre Dame, No. 8 California, No. 9 Princeton, No. 10 Tennessee, No. 11 Minnesota, No. 12 Harvard and No. 19 Washington. These schools will field varsity eight, second varsity eight and varsity four boats. In addition No. 7 Stanford, No. 13 UCLA, No. 14 Central Florida, and No. 15 Dartmouth will each field a varsity eight boat. Out of the 15 other crew teams in the field of competition, the Cal varsity eight has faced six and defeated four.

Cal Lineups:
Varsity Eight: cox Krista Ellis, stroke Ali Seders, 7 Eeva Karppinen, 6 Megan Smith, 5 Mara Allen, 4 Onna Poeter, 3 Elena Humphreys, 2 Taryn O'Connell, bow Lou Kinder.
Second Varsity Eight: cox Megan O'Connor, stroke, Adrienne Keller, 7 Candice Rediger, 6 Rebecca Meissner, 5 Kaiti Seders, 4 Lauren Nowinski, 3 Jennifer Stanton, 2 Sam Silvia, bow Maggie Devine.
Varsity Four: cox Becky Pacheco, stroke Mariah Reddick, 3 Jessica Smith, 2 Emmie Koenig, bow Melissa Herman.

2007 All-Pac-10 Rowing Team: Junior Mara Allen and senior Megan Smith were both named to the 2007 All-Pac-10 Team. This is marks Smith's first appearance on the all-conference team, while Allen received All-Pac-10 honors in 2006.

Women's Rowing All-Pac-10 Team:
Mara Allen, Cal
Karry Birk, Stanford
Ligita Kaviere, USC
Elle Logan, Stanford
Magdalena Madziewicz, USC
Stephanie Morrision, Stanford
Dunja Pejcic, USC
Megan Smith, CAL
Vanessa Teff, UCLA
Kaylie Towne, Oregon State
Cara Trelstra, Washington
Gabriela Varekova, USC
Sarah Waterfield, Washington State

2006 NCAA Championship: Cal won its second consecutive team championship at last year's NCAA championships in West Windsor, N.J. Cal finished second in all three races that determine the team champion. The Bears fell to Brown in both the junior varsity eight and varsity four. The varsity eight finished 6.5 seconds behind Princeton and .26 ahead of Brown. Cal and Brown tied with 66 points each, but Cal was awarded the championship based on a higher finish in the varsity eight competition. The team championship was Cal's third national championship, the first coming under the AIAW (precursor to the NCAA) in 1980 and the second coming last year when the varsity eight set the NCAA championship course record to clinch the team victory for the Bears.

Cal at the NCAAs: Since the arrival of head coach Dave O'Neill in 1999, Cal has received a team invitation to the NCAA championships every year. The Bears success in NCAA competition culminated with a varsity eight title in 2005 and team championships the past two years. The Bears captured the bronze medal in the varsity eight races in both 1999 and 2002, while the junior varsity eight brought home silver in 2004 and bronze in 2003. Until 2005, the highest Cal had ever finished in the NCAA championships was third, in 2002.

Pac-10 Recap (May 13, 2007): The Bears won the second varsity eight championships, while finishing third behind USC and Stanford in the varsity eight finals. In the Varsity 8 grand final, the Trojans grabbed an early lead and remained in front throughout the 2000 meter course. Cal stood in fourth place at the 500-meter point and held that position halfway through most of the contest. The Bears had the fastest final 500, closing in 1:38.26, but were unable to move higher than third. USC finished in 6:40.13, with Stanford taking second in 6:42.55 and Cal third in 6:44.58. The novice eight won the petite final, finishing two seconds ahead of UC Davis. Cal's varsity four came in second in the petite final, falling to UCLA by just over one second, but defeating Sacramento State by 29 seconds.

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