Miami Rowers Stroke towards ACC Championships

Miami Rowers Stroke towards ACC Championships

April 19, 2009

Coral Gables, Fla. – The University of Miami Hurricanes rowing team takes back to the water on Monday, Apr. 20, participating in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Championships in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. This year’s event takes place at Melton Lake with free admission.

The ACC Championships features five different races between the six participating schools within the ACC. UM will be facing off against crews from Boston College, Clemson, Duke, North Carolina and Virginia. The Virginia Cavaliers claimed the top honor last year–the ninth consecutive for the Charlottesville-based institution.

Miami enters this year’s event with a host new rowers returning, but entirely fresh faces on the coaching staff, including interim head coach Boban Rankovic. Rankovic is eager to see how the `Canes matchup against elite competition within the league.

“Well the team is really excited to race at the ACC Championships,” expressed Rankovic, heading into his first-ever ACC Championship event. “I am pleased with our forward leap we’ve made in the last month. We have a fantastic attitude and a clear focus on our goal for the ACC’s.”

Last season, Miami senior Laura Cordner earned her second consecutive All-ACC honor while helping UM to a fifth place finish in the ACC Championships. Cordner would also earn All-ACC Academic honors, as well as being named to the CRCA Division I Pocock All-America Second Team. Cordner was later selected to the CRCA All-South Region First Team.

UM began the spring season with a sweep of Dowling College (then second-ranked in NCAA Division II) and Rochester, before defeating BIG EAST power Connecticut a day later. For that honor, UM’s First varsity Eight was rewarded as this year’s first ACC Crew of the Week. That crew consisted of Marleena Eyre, Monika Sajincic, Karalyn Van Aken, Camilla Espana, Emily Wingrove, Laura Cordner, Rachael Sporko, Frida Schneider and coxswain Shira Kharazzi. Van Aken substituted for Sajincic in the `Canes win over UConn.

Miami then participated in the annual San Diego Crew Classic, taking home a number of Top 5 times over the course of the two-day event. The JV8 crew for UM collected a third place finish in their heat on the first day, earning a shot at the cup a day later.

A duo of nationally-ranked teams from the ACC will be on hand for the `Canes to do battle with as nine-time defending champion Virginia is ranked 13th, with Clemson just behind them at 16th in the latest CRCA poll. Virginia and Clemson are seeded first and second for the event.

This year’s schedule of events is as follows: Varsity Four (9 a.m.), Novice Eight (9:20 am), Second Varsity Eight (9:40 am), and concluding with the First Varsity Eight (10 a.m.). The awards ceremony is slated to begin at 10:30 am.

“We are experiencing tremendous speed increase, and we’re just hoping that will take us to our expected performance,” said Rankovic. “It should be an exciting meet for all of us … the coaching staff and student-athletes.”

For more information on the ACC Rowing Championships, locate your internet browser to

Miami Lineups at ACC Championships…

1st Varsity 8
Bow: Monika Sajincic
2: Marleena Eyre
3: Emily Wingrove
4: Sarah Medland
5: Rachael Sporko
6: Laura Cordner
7: Frida Schneider
Stroke: Camilla Espana
Coxswain: Shira Kharrazi

2nd Varsity 8
Bow: Lizzy Elner
2: Alexa McCanick
3: Karalyn Van Aken
4: Nic Saner
5: Isabelle Prosser
6: Molly Thornton
7: Kate Rickers
Stroke: Stephanie Parrish
Coxswain: Christina Crocco

Varsity 4
Bow: Theresa Recicar
2: Allyson Hodgkins
3: Olivia Arkell
Stroke: Tara Eddings
Coxswain: Heather Hollembeak

Novice 8
Bow: Amanda Zacharkiewicz
2: Kate Hall
3: Victoria Uribe
4: Natalie Snyder
5: Julie Creamer
6: Christina Mena
7: Maria Siemann
Stroke: Morgan Visalli
Coxswain: Tiara Brown