Oct. 26, 2008
AUSTIN, Texas -- The Texas Rowing team opened its 2008-09 home racing season, Saturday with six victories at the Head of the Colorado on Lady Bird Lake. The Longhorns picked up wins in the first novice eight, open four, open single scull, second novice eight, women's pair and novice four races. Texas also picked up a second and fourth-place finish in the women's open eight.
Texas' first varsity eight of coxswain Mary Cait McPherson, Jennifer VanderMaarel, Callie Mattrisch, Jelena Zunic, Anna Thomson, Meg George, Nancy Arrington, Jacqueline Gorcyca and Felicia Izaguirre-Werner recorded a time of 17:15.5 and earned second place in the open eight, while the second varsity eight crossed the finish in 17:36.7 and claimed fourth.
In the novice eight race, Texas' crew of coxswain Emma Dirks, Tatiana Dillon, Liz Keenan, Liz Bowlin, Katrina Cerk, Lauren Conrad, Ashley Hanigan, Marika Whitehurst and Kaiti Kirk placed first, notching a time of 19:47.8. The Horns' second entry in the race finished fourth (20:35.2), while UT's third entry placed fifth (20:57.6).
"It was very exciting to watch the novices prepare to race this week as all six novice eights readied themselves to compete for the first time," head coach Carie Graves said. "They were focused, diligent and quietly very excited to represent The University of Texas for the first time."
Zunic was Texas' lone participant in the women's open single scull and she crossed the finish first, registering a time of 22:45.4.
The Longhorns tallied a first and sixth-place finish in the women's open 4+ race. The crew of coxswain Colby Lowrey, VanderMaarel, Arrington, Gorcyca and Izaguirre-Werner finished first, posting a time of 19:49.6 and the boat comprised of coxswain Charli Brickner, Laura Perkins, Allison Weiland, Tara Saad and Elizabeth Meserve finished sixth (21:03.2).
The Longhorns' three entries in the second novice eight race captured first, second and fourth place. The Horns' first entry finished in 21:13.1 (first), the second entry finished in 22:10.8 (second) and the third entry posted a time of 23:36.0 (fourth).
"Coach Caroline King and her staff of volunteers and student assistants have done a superb job in coaching and race preparation," Graves added.
Texas' four entries shined in the women's open pair, claiming first, second, third and sixth place. The tandem of Thomson and Sara Cottingham placed first (21:33.9), the pair of George and Mattrisch (21:58.2) took second, while Angela Kirchner and Colleen Irby placed third (21:58.6) and Sally Tunell and Emily Cook claimed sixth (22:40.9).
In the novice four race, Texas' boat of coxswain Dirks, Dillon, Cerk, Conrad and Keenan placed first (22:17.0), while UT's second entry took third (23:45.2) and its third boat claimed seventh (25:33.0).
"We are looking forward to next weekend when the novice and varsity teams travel (58 of us) to Tennessee to compete in the Head of the Hooch," Graves said. " It will be the novices first ever road trip."
Texas returns to action Saturday, Nov. 1 when it travels to Chattanooga, Tenn. for the Head of the Hooch regatta.