May 11, 2009
THIS WEEK — The University of Iowa women’s rowing team will travel to Oak Ridge, TN, this weekend to compete in the 2009 Aramark Central/South Regionals, hosted by the University of Tennessee. Prelims will begin Saturday morning, followed by semifinals Saturday afternoon and finals Sunday morning.
THE COMPETITION — The regatta will begin with four heats of five boats each. The top three teams in each heat will continue to the semifinal round where they must be in the top three to race in the grand final.
NATIONAL RANKINGS — Six of the seven Big Ten women’s rowing programs are ranked top-20 in the nation. Michigan State (3), Michigan (6) and Ohio State (8) are all ranked in the top 10. Wisconsin is ranked 14th, Iowa 17th and Minnesota 20th.
BIG TEN HONORS — Big Ten honors were recently announced and three Hawkeyes were recognized. Junior Sheila Rinozzi was named to the all-Big Ten team while sophomore Jess Novack was named to the second team. Senior Hannah Miller was a Big Ten Sportsmanship honoree.
2008 ARAMARK CENTRAL REGIONAL SPRINTS — The Hawkeyes sent all five boats to the finals in last year’s regionals. After winning the V4+ C final, Iowa finished 11th overall and seventh in the Central Regional team standings with 202 points.
LAST TIME OUT — The Hawkeyes last competed in the Big Ten Championships May 3. Iowa qualified for the petite finals with all six boats and won the 2N8+ and 1V8+ finals. The Hawkeyes finished in fifth with 60 points.
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 — “We’re extremely excited about regionals. The atmosphere at Oak Ridge is great. We are able to follow entire races, and it is one of the most exciting regattas we go to. We have gotten a lot of work done in the past week and a half, and I’m excited to see what we can accomplish.”