Varsity 4+ Clinches Best Finish Ever for URI Boat at NCAA Championship

Photo Credit: Justin Casterline
Photo Credit: Justin Casterline

Complete Results

Indianapolis - Rhode Island's Varsity 4+ clinched the highest finish ever for a URI boat at the NCAA Women's Rowing Championship by qualifying for the C Final in its flight at Eagle Creek Park Saturday.

The team of coxswain Tory Bauer, Tinsley Copeland, Morgan Cody, Stephanie Erlacher and Julia Fortin will finish at least 19th in its flight. The V4+ got off to an aggressive start in its race, establishing an early hold on third place in the field that included Wisconsin, UCF, Harvard and Gonzaga.

Midway through the race, it appeared Harvard would challenge for the third position, but Rhode Island surged in the third 500 meters and held on to secure the school's best individual boat finish. The Rams posted a time of 8:08.716, nearly nine seconds ahead of Harvard (8:17.371).

The Rams' V4+ will finish higher than any boat in program history at the NCAA Championship. The previous best finish by a Rhode Island boat was 20th, which had been done four times (2V8+ in 2018, Varsity 8+ and Varsity 4+ in 2016, 2V8+ in 2013). 

Rhode Island's Varsity 8+ just missed advancing to the C Final in its flight. The team of coxswain Karen Petrik, Erika Pena, Emily Winslow, Maddie Van Ummersen, Allie Reilly, Katie Shattuck, Jennae Alexander, Sage Iacovazzi and Katie Usher got off to a strong start. Racing in the third lane, the Rams held a deck lead over UCF for third place. However, UCF overtook Rhody by the midpoint of the race and held on to finish less than two seconds ahead of URI and secure the third spot in Sunday's C Final.

The V8+ can still secure its highest finish ever at the NCAA Championship by winning the D Final tomorrow morning. Doing so would place the Rams 19th overall in the final standings of the flight. Rhody will race against Northeastern, Gonzaga and Marist.

In the Second Varsity 8+ semifinal, Rhode Island fell to the back of the pack early. Coxswain Brenna Kelly, Mekenzie Mattheson, Madalyn Saporito, Sarah Dudinski, Kira McCully, Erin Shober, Kat Gillies, Anna Sampson and Kelsey Williams will compete in the D Final of its flight Sunday morning.

As a team, Rhode. Island will be looking for its best overall finish at the championship. In each of its three previous appearances, the Rams have placed 21st in the final team standings.

Rhode Island Saturday Results
Varsity 8+
C/D Semifinal
Wisconsin - 6:48.981
Duke - 6:49.170
UFC - 7:01.076
Rhode Island - 7:03.225
Northeastern - 7:03.878

Second Varsity 8+
C/D Semifinal
Harvard - 7:04.909
UCF - 7:06.738
Northeastern - 7:09.233
UCF - 7:09.498
Rhode Island - 7:29.992

Varsity 4+
C/D Semifinal

Wisconsin - 7:45.587
UCF - 7:52.694
Rhode Island - 8:08.716
Harvard - 8:17.371
Gonzaga - 8:21.531

Rhode Island Sunday Schedule
Varsity 8+
D Final - vs. Northeastern, Gonzaga and Marist

10:40 a.m.

Second Varsity 8+
D Final - vs. UCF, Gonzaga and Marist
11:00 a.m.

Varsity 4+
C Final - vs. Northeastern, UCF,  Iowa, Wisconsin and Navy  
11:30 a.m.

Rhode Island Lineups
Varsity 8+ (35-22)
Cox    Karen Petrik
Stroke Erika Pena
7 Seat Emily Winslow
6 Seat Maddie Van Ummersen
5 Seat Allie Reilly
4 Seat Katie Shattuck
3 Seat Jennae Alexander
2 Seat Sage Iacovazzi
Bow    Katie Usher

Second Varsity 8+ (25-32)
Cox     Brenna Kelly
Stroke Mekenzie Mattheson
7 Seat Madalyn Saporito
6 Seat Sarah Dudinski
5 Seat Kira McCully
4 Seat Erin Shober
3 Seat Kat Gillies
2 Seat Anna Sampson
Bow    Kelsey Williams

Varsity 4+ (36-20)
Cox     Tory Bauer
Stroke Tinsley Copeland
3 Seat Morgan Cody 
2 Seat Stephanie Erlacher
Bow     Julia Fortin