Hawkeyes Head To South-Central Regional Championships

May 12, 2008


The University of Iowa women’s rowing team travels to Oakridge, TN for the Aramark South-Central Regional Championships.

Four of the seven Big Ten teams are ranked among the top 20 Division I Varsity Eights. Michigan State (fifth), Ohio State (11th), Michigan (13th), and Minnesota (16th) are scattered throughout the recent poll from the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association/ USRowing.

Iowa qualified in all five events for the second day of competition. The Hawkeyes placed fourth in heat two of the open 4+ and the V4+ to advance to Final C. The N8+ moved to the semifinals placing fifth, and advanced to Final B. Iowa made a strong statement the second day, winning both V8+ and the 2V8+ races in Final C, and the open 4+ in Final C as well.

Iowa placed sixth, ahead of Indiana, with a total point tally of 40 at the Big Ten Championships. The Hawkeyes qualified in one of the six grand finals, while the other five qualified for the petite finals. Iowa won in the N8+ petite final finishing over Ohio State after Ohio State posted a faster time than Iowa in the morning sessions. Hawkeye boats placed second in the V8+ petite final, just behind Wisconsin. Iowa placed third in the 2V8+ (7:04.87), V4+ (818.01) and 2V4+ (9:16.51) petite finals. The lone Hawkeye medalist came in the 2N8+ grand final. Iowa beat out Michigan State for the bronze medal in the final second, finishing behind Wisconsin and Minnesota with a time of 7:21.32. Michigan State won the Big Ten Championships with a 150 total points.

Senior Brittany Keyes was named to the all-Big Ten first team, and was a Big Ten sportsmanship honoree. Junior Kristin Kelly was named to the all-Big Ten second team.

Mandi Kowal is in her 14th year as head coach of the Hawkeyes. In the 1997 and 1998 NCAA Rowing Championships, she coached the Varsity 4+ teams to fourth and eighth-places finishes, respectively. Kowal began her rowing career at the University of Wisconsin in 1981. She was a two-time rowing World Champion in the Women’s Lightweight 4- (1986-1987). She was named Female Athlete of the Year in 1987 by the US Rowing Association and was inducted into the United States Rowing Hall of Fame in 1997.

“As we work through finals we have moments in the day when we can think about the South-Central Regional Championships. We have been blessed with good weather which allows us to prepare well for this race. The team is very excited to finish out their academic year and head to Oakridge for the race they have been waiting for.”

” I am excited to see how the novice eight does, especially after coming off a disappointing showing at Big10’s. It only took one bad stroke at Big10’s to take us out of the grand final, and we not only have had to keep building speed and work through exams this week, but also work through the memory of that one bad stroke. I feel they have done a great job refocusing and working towards this race”

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