July 10, 2009

Taylor Ritzel Elected 2009-10 Captain

Two-Time Ivy And NCAA Champion

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Taylor Ritzel, who has helped the Yale varsity eight to two Ivy League and NCAA championships, has been elected captain of the 2009-10 Bulldogs. Ritzel, a Larkspur, Colo., native, has sat in the varsity boat in each of her three seasons at Yale. She was elected in a team vote held earlier this spring.

"Being elected captain by my team and having the opportunity to serve at an institution like Yale is truly an honor," Ritzel said. "The women that row for Yale and who I have the privilege of leading next year are some of the most dedicated and incredible people I have ever met. As captain, I hope to build on the successes of this past season but also recognize that each year brings new challenges and opportunities."

As a junior this spring, Ritzel stroked Yale to an Ivy League and Eastern Sprints title, a fourth-place finish at the NCAA Championships and a victory at the Henley Women's Regatta. In both her freshman and sophomore years, the Bulldogs' varsity eight won the NCAA title.

"Taylor will lead by example. She has won two Eastern Sprints and two NCAA championships so she knows what it takes to perform at the highest level," said Yale head coach Will Porter. "She is organized and motivated to leave her mark on her senior season."

Ritzel hopes to use what she learned from the previous captains during her tenure at Yale, including Christina Person, who served in 2008-09.

"I think each brought a unique force to the team that helped define each season in a very positive way," Ritzel said. "This year Christina did an excellent job and was able to lead the team to new heights. I can't wait for what's in store next year."

In addition to the naming of the captain, the team award winners were also announced. Tess Gerrand was the recipient of the Jenny Kiesling Award. The Nat Case Award was presented to Rebecca Nadal. Ritzel received the Anne Warner Award and Catherine McDermott was presented with the Chris Ernst Award.

Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity