April 28, 2009
THIS WEEK — The University of Iowa women’s rowing team will travel to Columbus, OH, this weekend to compete in the 2009 Big Ten Rowing Championships. Competition will begin Saturday morning at 6 a.m. CT, followed by the afternoon finals at 11 a.m. CT.
ROAD TO THE CHAMPIONSHIP — Each of the seven teams will compete in their respective morning heats for 1V8+, 2V8+, 1N8+, 2N8+, 1V4+ and 2V4+. The top two teams in each heat will compete for first through fourth place in the grand finals later in the day. Teams that don’t place in the top two of their morning heats will compete in the petite finals for fifth through seventh places.
BIG TEN’S NATIONAL RANKINGS — Six of the seven Big Ten women’s rowing programs are ranked top-20 in the nation. Michigan State (3), Michigan (4) and Ohio State (8) are all ranked in the top 10. Wisconsin is ranked 14th, Iowa 17th and Minnesota 20th.
LAST EVENT — Iowa traveled to Belleville, MI, to compete against Michigan, Michigan State and Louisville April 11. The Hawkeyes, then unranked, beat 20th-ranked Louisville in every race and put together extremely close races with both Michigan and Michigan State, then ranked fourth and fifth, respectively. The highlight of the weekend came when the 2V4+ boat of sophomores Emily Melvold, Allison Robinson, Heidie Miller, Darcy DeLong and Meghan Clancy defeated both 2V4+ boats of Michigan State by nearly 20 seconds.
HEAD COACH — Mandi Kowal is in her 15th 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.
QUOTING COACH KOWAL — “As we head into the championship segment of our season, we continue with our final preparations to ensure peak boat speed at these races. As a team, it has been a very competitive and fun spring, showing signs of respectable speed and racing capabilities. Now the real test will come for everyone as we head to our first championship race.”