Women's Rowing Opens Spring With Connell Cup

Directions to Orchard Beach Lagoon

PHILADELPHIA - The Penn women’s rowing team is ready to kick off the 2009 championship season with the Connell Cup, which will take place Saturday and feature the Quakers, Yale and Columbia. This year’s races will be hosted by the Lions at Glen Island State Park in Pelham, N.Y.

“This Saturday the goal is to put all of our preparation to work,” said Penn’s third-year head coach, Mike Lane. “This will be the first test of the spring season and an opportunity for us to race two very fast crews in Yale and Columbia.

“Our goals are simple: execute a clean race and leave everything out on the water. The results will work themselves out. This is also an opportunity to improve from week to week with the goal of having our best race of the year at Eastern Sprints on May 17.”

Yale enters Saturday’s races boasting the top-ranked varsity eight in the country, according to the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) poll that was released Wednesday. By comparison, Penn is among a handful of schools receiving votes, and Columbia is unranked.

“Yale is a very fast crew -- that being said, so is Columbia,” said Lane. “The Ivy League is the strongest rowing league in the country, so every weekend we are tested; this is just one of many throughout the spring. Last year, our varsity eight lost to Yale by less than three seconds which was a huge accomplishment. This weekend will be a test, but by no means will it make or break our season. We will get faster as the year goes on, and I can’t wait to build on last season’s success. Our varsity eight had the best finish at Eastern Sprints sense 1983, and the goal this year is to go even faster.”

Yale swept all four races that were competed at last year’s Connell Cup in Derby, Conn. Penn finished second in all four, while Columbia placed third. In the varsity eight race, the Quakers gave the Bulldogs a run but lost by less than three seconds. In the novice eight, Penn fell by just 1.2 seconds to Yale.

Connell Cup schedule

11:40 a.m. - Varsity 4 B (Columbia, Penn, Yale)
Noon - Varsity 4 A (Columbia, Penn, Yale)
12:20 p.m. - Second Varsity 8 (Columbia, Penn, Yale)
12:40 p.m. - Varsity 8 (Columbia, Penn, Yale)
1 p.m. - Varsity 4 C (Columbia A, Columbia B, Penn, Yale)
1:20 p.m. - Novice 8 (Columbia, Penn, Yale)

Penn Boatings for the Connell Cup

Varsity 4 B (11:40 a.m.)

Cox – C. Provey

4 – S. Ridge

3 – K. Johnson

2 – A. Chain

1 – S. Foelster

Varsity 4 A (noon)

Cox – R. Pattison

4 – M. Gilley

3 – S. Madden

2 – B. Braun

1 – C. Wise

Second Varsity 8 (12:20 p.m.)

Cox – L. Caffrey

8 – L. Fitzgerald

7 – M. King

6 – C. Mehaffey-Coy

5 – L. Hathaway

4 – J. Drossner

3 – J. Ritchie

2 – N. Bedos

1 – A. Matta

Varsity 8 (12:40 p.m.)

Cox – C. Sloane

8 - L. Donald

7 – M. Rieck

6 – K. Haneman

5 – R. Donald

4 – K. Purdy

3 – N. Ashbridge

2 – K. Ellison

1 – K. Burke

Varsity 4 C (1 p.m.)

Cox – C. Dommert

4 – M. Brauer

3 – J. Price

2 – K. Mooney

1 – S. Gadpaille

Novice 8 (1:20 p.m.)

Cox – C. Marcaccio

8 – J. Glazer

7 – Q. Werner

6 – L. Bridgman

5 – K. Stillman

4 – K. Barone

3 – J. Jackson

2 – M. Harper

1 – A. Dusenbery