Rowing Earns First Victory At Knecht Cup

April 12, 2010

COOPER RIVER - The Loyola rowing program, had a historic showing at the Knecht Cup last weekend as the Greyhounds recorded their first-ever win at the event and advanced every boat into a Sunday final on the Cooper River.

The Women's Lightweight 4 of Daisy Carter, Elizabeth Staub, Catriona Miller and Kim Winiarczyk took the gold medal in the grand final on Sunday. To get there, the foursome convincingly defeated Lafayette, MIT, Pittsburgh and UMass and had another solid showing in the Semifinal.

Cold and very windy conditions Saturday affected the rowing schedule all day on the Cooper, but Loyola persevered and had a solid day of rowing across the board. Sunday was much calmer on the water and resulted in a memorable showing for the Greyhounds.

The Women's Pair of Olivia Duckworth and Meghan Fregeau qualified for the semifinals by finishing second to Duke, and besting crews from Villanova, NYU and Lehigh.

The duo had a little bit more trouble in the semifinal, finishing fifth and then went on to very tight Petite final. Although Penn State won that round, Loyola had a great tight race, finishing fourth in a photo-finish with Hofstra and Pittsburgh.

The Women's Varsity 4 consisted of Kelly McDermott, Sheila Marsicovetere, Leslie Ann Perez and Julianne Roccuzzo. The foursome had a solid preliminary heat finishing second to Buffalo and beating Delaware, Fordham and Rutgers.

The day after, the Four won the Petite final, defeating UMass and New Hampshire. The Greyhounds entered a second Varsity 4 of Meghan Fregeau, Margaret Ajello, Helen O'Connell and Olivia Duckworth.

The Womens Novice 4 of Lauren Walsh, Kimberly Seckler, Alex Spark, Erin Mulhern, and Kathleen Murphy had very good heat win over UMass and West Virginia with one of the top five times of the day. Their time moved them into a good semifinal heat against Miami, West Virginia, and Pittsburgh, where they finished fourth, qualifying for the petite final the next day.

The foursome also won its final over West Virginia, Lafayette, Buffalo and Dusquesne in an impressive come-from-behind-effort, winning the event in the last 50 meters.

Loyola's Women's varsity 8 of Katherine Griffin, Kelly McDermott, Sheila Marsicovetere, Daisy Carter, Leslie Ann Perez, Catriona Miller, Elizabeth Staub, Kimberly Winiarczyk and Julianne Roccuzzo became the first women's crew to advance out of the heats. Although the rowers weren't satisfied with a fourth place finish in the heat, their time was enough to advance to the semifinal round where they took sixth, advancing to the third level final.

In the finals, the women could not hold pace with the more powerful Delaware squad as they pulled away to a 5.5 second lead, but North Carolina had to row at their best to hold off the women. In the end, Loyola took third, but just 2.5 seconds behind first-place Delaware.

The Womens Novice 8 of Kelsey Rohmon, Emily Ehmann, Susan O'Rourke and Alexandra Broznya combined with every member of the Novice 4 won their heat over UMass, Penn State and MAAC rivals, Iona and Marist, advancing to the semifinals. National power, Wisconsin got the better of the Greyhounds in the semis as Loyola took fifth in the race.

The Men's Varsity 8 of Thomas Quinn, Nick Miano, Jordan Mastera, Michael Faust, Marc Hesse, Josh Tarini, Ryan Walsh, Maciej Owsianny and Christopher Golon "raced hard, but was not as sharp as they could have been," according to head coach Al Ramirez. "Opponents Drexel, Virginia and Fordham were too powerful," as the `Hounds finished ahead of Villanova and ended up advancing to third level final. During the race, Loyola also experienced some equipment failure as an oar popped out of its oarlock, forcing the crew to come to a stop and costing them over ten seconds.

In the finals, the men showed a better middle section of the race, but had some weaker moments in the third 500 that caused them to fall behind Delaware and Rutgers by six seconds.

The Men's Novice 8 also had a great final race against North Carolina, Marist and the Wisconsin lightweights. Loyola got off to a strong start and took the lead, but the Tar Heels came back to take the lead midway through the race. However, the `Hounds battled back and took the lead in the final 400 to earn the victory.