April 12, 2013
AMHERST, Mass. -
The UMass rowing team heads to the annual Knecht Cup in Cherry Hill, N.J. this weekend. Preliminary heats will be held on Saturday and finals will take place on Sunday. Last year at the Knecht Cup, the Minutewomen took home three gold medals, winning the Junior Varsity 8+ Petite Final, the pair, and the single. The Varsity 4+ took second place in the Grand Final.
Last weekend the Minutewomen swept Holy Cross in four races. The Varsity 8+ earned their first victory since the win against UConn on April 6, 2012. The Junior Varsity 8+ had the closest race of the day, defeating the Crusader boat by just over two seconds. UMass took first and second place in the Varsity 4+, with the winning boat finishing 36 seconds before the Holy Crost 4+.
Checking The Weather
Saturday and Sunday will be in the low sixties with winds up to 12 miles per hour. There is a 15 percent chance of precipitation.
The 2012-13 Minutewomen
This year's squad is returning 34 athletes from last season and has added 26 including two transfers.
The junior class boasts 20 returners while just four members of the Class of 2013 remain.
Kendall Bennett is returning as a graduate student and will be seen in the Varsity Eight this season.
The 2012 Fall Season
The Minutewomen started off at the Head of the Oklahoma, a new addition to the fall schedule. Michaela Streitfield, Kendall Bennett, Angela Streitfield, and Lauren St. Pierre were the selected athletes to compete at the Oklahoma City event. Streitfield finished in first place in the single sprint competition and Bennett took first in the collegiate single. All four Minutewomen competed in the quad and finished in first place in a close race with the Oklahoma City University boat.
The whole squad headed to the Head of the Housatonic, where they had two second place finishes. The Novice 8+, in their debut race, earned a silver medal and the varsity 4+ also finished in second.
UMass hosted two races the next weekend, the first a sculling competition, a new addition to the schedule, in which they took first place in the single and double race. The second was the annual Pumpkin Head Regatta, a walk-on novice race against Smith College, which they won.
The Minutewomen entered four boats into the Head of the Charles Regatta. The lightweight 4+ came in seventh place in their race and the varsity 8+ took sixteenth in a field of 34 boats.
At the Head of the Fish, the final race of the season for the full squad, the Minutewomen boasted eight first place finishes, two second place finishes, and two third place finishes. Among the gold medalists were the pair, lightweight 8+, single, double, novice 4+, novice single, lightweight 4+ and quad.
The novice rowers finished off the season at the annual Green Monster race at Dartmouth where they finished in sixth place and at the Foot of the Charles in Boston, where they finished in fourth.
Wilson Makes an Impact
Taryn Wilson, a transfer from Marietta College, quickly became an asset to the team in the fall season, her first at UMass. In her second race as a Minutewoman, Wilson took second in doubles competition.
Wilson was a member of the lightweight 4+ that came in seventh at the Head of the Charles Regatta.
At the Head of the Fish, Wilson took two first place finishes (lightweight 8+ and pair) and a second place finish (double), which earned her a UMass Co-Athlete of the Week honor.
Nicole Destefano competed in the 2012 Royal Henley Regatta in England after taking third place in the C Final at Youth Nationals in the double.
Allanah Rubi-Mooney also competed in Youth Nationals and took sixth place in the B Final in the quad.
Kaylah Kleczka and DeStefano rowed against each other at Scholastic Nationals in the double. DeStefano took first place in the semi-final race and Kleczka finished in third to continue on to the finals. DeStefano beat out Kleczka for a gold medal by just a half of a second with a time of 5:44.552. Kleczka took silver with a time of 5:45.083.
Kleczka rowed in the 2011 Royal Canadian Henley Regatta and at the 2011 Royal Women's Henley Regatta in England in the quad.
Krysten Menks represented the United States at the CanAmMex Regatta in Mexico City, Mexico this past summer in the quad and also attended the US Junior Sculling Selection Camp.