Head coach Lisa Glenn and her University of Tennessee Lady Vol rowing team completed their two days at Melton Hill Lake in Oak Ridge on Sunday with a flurry of activity to finish third at the Southern Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships. Duke
University and the College of Charleston finished first and second overall, respectively.
I'm pleased with third place overall, Glenn said. This is the strongest showing we've had yet at SIRAs. I put out a challenge to everyone to make Grand Finals, and am very pleased with our three varsity boats for doing so.
Having raced together for only a brief time, the Novice 4+ shell comprised of Jenny Oliver, Diana Bundy, Andrea Butt, Bethany Beil and Heather Thrash opened the morning for Tennessee by finishing third in the Petite Final with a clocking of 8:37.63. Centr
al Florida (8:25.86) and Emory (8:28.86) held off the Lady Vols in a battle of crews who finished third and fourth in Saturday's three semifinal heats.
Coming in as the top qualifier in Saturday's two opening-round 2nd Varsity 8+ heats, Tennessee's shell, crewed by Shannon McMahon, Erin Moore, Claire Newton, Joyce Kranzke, Kay Logan, Davida Lopez, MacKenzie Earle, Sally BeVille and Kelly Hotaling, crosse
d the line in 7:10.60 to finish second behind Saturday's number two qualifier Clemson (7:02.89).
The Grand Final of the Varsity 4+ division featured UT's tandem of Lizzie Brown, Sarah Long, Natalie Fecher, Katie Zajac and Mary Gruzalski in their second race together following last week's triumph at the Indiana Cup. After consecutive runner-up finishe
s in its opening and semifinal round heats Saturday, the Lady Vol Varsity 4+ crossed the line Sunday in fifth with an 8:07.79.
Tennessee's last Grand Final participant, the Varsity 8+ shell made up of Erika Twedt, Lauren Kueck, Kristen Logan, Ashley Smith, Kacey Montgomery, Kelly Kraiss, Grace Harrington, Ginny Bradley and Lindsay Sagar clocked in at 7:14.22, finishing sixth in a
race in which first through sixth were separated by only 12 seconds.