Cal Women's Crew Inks Seven Recruits

Dec. 3, 2007

BERKELEY - The California women's crew program signed seven recruits to National Letters of Intent, Golden Bears head coach Dave O'Neill announced today. All seven are in-state signees, with three hailing from the Bay Area.

The Bears signed Taylor Christensen (El Dorado Hills, Calif.), Jackie Horton (Los Gatos, Calif.), Lillian Meagher (Piedmont, Calif.), Lisa Pascuzzi (Los Gatos, Calif.), Stephanie Stone (Costa Mesa, Calif.), Ariel Suares (Long Beach, Calif.) and Tanya Wolfram (El Dorado Hills, Calif.).

'A great program starts with the right people, and we are very proud of the incoming class,' O'Neill said. 'We focus our recruiting efforts on the top prospects from California. This was very much the case this year, as the level of junior rowing in the state is outstanding. These recruits are impressive individually and may possibly be the most powerful group we have ever had. They are clearly capable of handling the workload required to win an NCAA championship, and, more importantly, they possess the attitude which is critical to our team's success.'

The 5-11 Christensen, who has been rowing for three years, attends Saint Francis High School in Sacramento and, like future teammate Wolfram, competes for the Capital Crew club.

'Taylor is exactly the type of recruit who will thrive at Cal,' O'Neill said. 'Academic and athletic success are very important to her, and we're looking forward to helping her achieve both.'

Horton was invited to the 2007 USRowing junior selection camp. The 5-11 student-athlete is a team captain at the Los Gatos Rowing Club, of which Pascuzzi is also a member.

'I'm really excited to work with Jackie in the years ahead, and she is going to play a big role in our future success,' O'Neill said. 'She's strong, rows very well and has the mind set of a winner. She's doing some terrific things at Los Gatos, and she will continue to do so at Cal next year and beyond.'

Meagher, a 6-0 East Bay product who is relatively new to rowing, comes from a strong athletic background that includes basketball and boxing. She rows for the Oakland Strokes.

'Although Lillian is new to the sport, she is going to do very well on our team,' O'Neill commented. 'She's a mature, hard-working and tough athlete. I'm glad to have been introduced to her this fall.'

The 5-9 Pascuzzi started rowing last year after a knee surgery ended her soccer career.

'Lisa has not been rowing very long, but she's showing to be a real winner,' O'Neill said. 'In many ways she has positioned herself to have an outstanding college career. Her introduction to the sport is top-notch, and she will be ready to make the step to the next level.'

Stone, a 6-0 stroke who has been rowing for four years at the Newport Aquatic Center, is a captain of her club.

'Stephanie is the strongest junior rower in the country,' O'Neill said. 'We have been following her progress since her freshman year, and we are thrilled that she is coming to Cal. She will add a lot of power to our team, and her positive attitude will be just as important.'

Suares, a 5-2 coxswain for the Long Beach Junior Crew, won the 2007 SW regional championship and USRowing's Youth Invitational in the varsity eight. She also won the 2007 Head of the Charles Regatta in the youth four.

'Ariel comes highly recommended, and I have been impressed,' O'Neill commented. 'She's a true competitor and a proven winner. We view the coxswain position very seriously, so I'm thrilled that Ariel is a Golden Bear. Ariel at Cal is a perfect fit.'

Wolfram, a four-year rower with Capital Crew, is a captain of her club.

'Tanya is everything we look for in a recruit,' O'Neill said. 'She is strong, rows well and has a great attitude. She has done very well at her junior program and will make some big steps in years ahead.'

Cal, which finished seventh overall at the 2007 NCAA Championships, opens the 2008 season with the Windermere Collegiate Classic March 29-30 at Redwood Shores, Calif.

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