Rowing Cruises to a Pair of Top-Three Finishes to Start Spring

The Monmouth University women’s rowing team kicked off their spring season with two top-three finishes in the Women’s Collegiate Novice 4+ at the Murphy Cup Regatta on the Schuylkill River on Saturday, April 8.

The Hawks’ “A” entry of freshmen Marissa McKenzie, Caitlin Newson, Samantha LeCrone, Alayna Degan, and coxswain Hailea Anderson finished with a time of 7:38.37, good for first place. Monmouth’s “B” entry of Grace Hutchinson, Kaitlyn Rice, Anna Gaglianone, Heather Humes, and coxswain Casey Mastin finished shortly behind their teammates, coming in third with a 8:14.38 finish.

Both Monmouth entries moved on to the final, with Monmouth “A” finishing in 7:35.75 and Monmouth “B” coming in at 8:17.09. The “A” entry’s 7:35.7 and 7:38.3 was enough to earn them fifth overall out of the 29 women’s fours that competed in the regatta.

“I thought both boats did a great job of executing the race plans we had laid out for them. We’ve had very little water time so far this spring, so we challenged them to compete at some pretty conservative stroke ratings and really focus on efficiency,” explained Head Coach Scott Belford. “For half of this group, it was their first regatta ever, at any level, over any distance. To finish in the way we did was very rewarding. We are looking forward to getting back to work this week and putting these two boats together in preparation for racing both the four and the eight next week at the Knecht Cup.”

The team made school history in October when the Hawks competed in the program’s first ever competition at the Navy Day Regatta. Monmouth placed third out of five boats in the Collegiate Women’s Freshman 8+. The Hawks’ two entries in the Collegiate Women’s Freshman 4+ finished fourth and sixth out of eight boats.

Just two weeks later, the team earned its first medals in program history at the Head of the Schuylkill Regatta with third-place finishes in the Women’s Collegiate Freshman 4+ (15:14.0) and the Women’s Collegiate Freshman 8+ (14:07.5).

Between their successful inaugural fall season and their strong start to the spring, the women’s rowing team now has four medals to their name in the program’s first year. They will have the chance to keep the ball rolling with a busy spring schedule. Up next, Monmouth will compete in the Knecht Cup in Pennsauken, New Jersey on Saturday, April 15 and Sunday, April 16. The team will then travel to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to compete in the Kerr Cup on Saturday, April 22 followed by the SHU Invite the next weekend on Saturday, April 29.