May 24, 2007

NCAA Championships Begin Friday

May 24, 2007

OAK RIDGE, Tenn. - Yale's quest for an NCAA Team Championship begins Friday with the heats. The Bulldogs, who arrived in Tennessee on Tuesday night, have spent the last two days practicing on Melton Hill Lake. The varsity eight is the first to get underway Friday at 8:15 a.m. The second varsity eight races at 10 a.m. followed by the varsity four at 11 a.m.

"The key for us to is to treat this as an extension of the season," said Yale Head Coach Will Porter. "Hopefully, the excitement and adrenaline will give us a little push, but we don't try to do anything different."

The varsity eight races against Princeton, Notre Dame, Stanford, Dartmouth and Tennessee. The top three finishers all advance to Saturday's semifinals. In the varsity eight for the Bulldogs are Rachel Jeffers, Tess Gerrand, Christine Geiser, Jamie Redman, Taylor Ritzel, Amanda Rich, Alice Henly, Christine Glandorf and coxswain Emily Cleveland.

The second varsity of Jennie Hansen, Cara Dermody, Maren McCrea, Suzanne Salgado, Christina Person, Milica Vujovic, Hayley Johnson, Lee Glandorf and coxswain Erin Haber races against Notre Dame, Tennessee, Brown, Minnesota and Ohio State. The winner automatically earns a berth in Sunday's Grand Final. All other finishers compete in Saturday's repechage.

The varsity four has its heat at 11 a.m. against California, Brown, Ohio State, Notre Dame and Princeton. The winner qualifies for Sunday's Grand Final and the rest will race in Saturday's repechage. In the boat for Yale are Karrin Weisenthal, Caroline Berson, Rebecca Nadal, Katherine Adams and Berkley Adrio.

"The whole idea is to show our speed each day," Porter said. "We've stayed true to the rhythm of training.

Yale is making its seventh overall appearance in the team championship. The Bulldogs' best finish came in 2004 when they were second. Yale has already captured the Charles Willing Jr. Team Trophy for overall supremacy at the Eastern Sprints, and the varsity eight is undefeated and winners of the Ivy League title.

Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity

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