ROWING MEDALS IN FOUR EVENTS, NARROWLY MISSES WINNING A CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP
Sacramento State's second varsity eight (silver medal) was one of four Hornet boats that took home a medal today
GOLD RIVER, Calif. – The Sacramento State women’s rowing squad medaled in four of its five grand finals, claiming two silver medals, and two bronze in the final day of the Western Intercollegiate Rowing Association (WIRA) Championships on a perfect Sunday morning at Lake Natoma. The WIRA’s serve as the Hornets’ conference championship regatta, and crews raced in ideal conditions throughout the day.
The Hornets claimed silver in both the second varsity eight and varsity four grand finals, and bronze in both the varsity eight and novice eight finals. It marked just the second time in school history that Sacramento State was able to medal in each of the regatta’s four most prestigious races (varsity eight, second varsity eight, varsity four and novice eight). The Hornets also accomplished the feat last season.
Sacramento State’s varsity eight medaled for the fourth straight year at the WIRA Championships, the varsity four medaled for the third consecutive season, and both the second varsity eight and novice eight medaled for the second straight year. Sacramento State fielded one of the youngest varsity eight entries in recent memory as the boat consisted of five underclassmen (two freshmen and three sophomores) and only one senior.
Despite today’s medal-achieving efforts, the Hornets fell short of winning their seventh WIRA team points title. Behind the strength of first-place finishes in the varsity eight, second varsity eight, novice eight and varsity four finals, Gonzaga won the title with 344 total points. Following closely behind was Sacramento State (338), Humboldt State (334), Western Washington (296) and San Diego State (293) to round the top five.
A total of five Sacramento State rowers received all-WIRA accolades for today’s efforts. Selected to the first team were senior Sarah Pivonka, junior Shelley Zakskorn and sophomore Erika Busch. Senior Sadeeka Dosu and sophomore Ashley Ferko received second team accolades.
“All five boats rowed hard and competed well today,” Sacramento State head coach Mike Connors said “We were hoping for a better finish in the varsity eight. The boat’s mentality was good, but our inexperience showed a bit. This was a valuable learning experience for a very young group, and they will use that to improve going forward.”
Only 2.5 seconds separated the top three finishers in the varsity eight grand final. Gonzaga placed first with a time of 6:43.5, followed by Saint Mary’s (6:45.5) and the Hornets’ time of 6:46.0 to round out the top three finishers in a six-boat field. Gonzaga led the entire way, opening up a 10-seat lead at one point before Sacramento State and Saint Mary’s closed the gap during the final 500 meters. The Hornets failed to win their first gold in the event since 2010, but did medal for the 12th time since the program gained intercollegiate status in 1995.
The Hornets’ second varsity eight raced to a second-place time of 6:59.4, trailing Gonzaga which won by open water and a time of 6:47.8. Loyola Marymount was a distant third place with a time of 7:09.1 to round out the top three places in a five-boat field.
A little over two seconds separated the top three finishers in the novice eight, as Gonzaga finished first with a time of 7:07.3, followed by UC Davis (7:08.3), Sacramento State (7:09.6), San Diego (7:20.6), UC Santa Barbara (7:23.7) and San Diego State (7:26.6).
In the varsity four, Gonzaga won handily by a time of 7:25.2, followed by second-place finishing Sacramento State at 7:40.8. No other boat in the field was within 16 seconds of the Hornets’ time. In the novice four, the Hornets’ sixth-place finishing time was 8:20.0.
Complete results of all the Hornets’ races are below.
Sacramento State returns to the water in two weeks (May 11-12) when the team competes at the Dad Vail Regatta in Philadelphia. Part of the squad will also take part in the Pacific Coast Rowing Championships on May 12 at Lake Natoma.
FINAL TEAM POINTS STANDINGS
1. Gonzaga - 344
2. Sacramento State - 338
3. Humboldt State - 334
4. Western Washington - 296
5. San Diego State - 293
6. Saint Mary’s - 274
7. Loyola Marymount - 235
8. UC Davis - 191
9. Puget Sound - 187
10. UC San Diego - 178
TODAY’S SACRAMENTO STATE LINEUPS
Cox – Shelley Zakskorn, stroke – Sarah Pivonka, 7 – Erika Busch, 6 – Nneka Anyanwu, 5 – Michelle Evers, 4 – Jessica Smith, 3 – Antonia Dendrinos, 2 – Kloey Glass, bow – Karoline Sly
SECOND VARSITY EIGHT
Cox – Socheata Guimond, stroke - Pam Kline, 7 - Sadeeka Dosu, 6 - Alyssa Padberg, 5 - Alexus Higa, 4 - Caitlin Brennan, 3 - Alexandra Santella, 2 - Hannah Silberberg, bow - Tess Heidig
Cox - Maggie Liss, stroke – Whitney Dellafosse, 7 – Kim Gross, 6 – Katie Koehler, 5 – Rosie Kloh, 4 – Andrea Mueller, 3 – Kimberly Gollmyer, 2 – Tawnya Curfman, bow – Carly Hartman
Cox – Alyssa Reyna, stroke - Ashley Ferko, 3 - Noelle Giddens, 2 - Yesenia Miranda, bow - Charity Oberg
c - Elizabeth Schneider, s - Emilie Williams, 3 - Alexis Clarke-Steele, 2 - Desiree Drab Munoz, b - Alyssa Williams
SACRAMENTO STATE’S RESULTS (all grand finals)
1. Gonzaga 7:25.2
2. Sacramento State 7:40.8
3. Saint Mary’s 7:57.0
4. San Diego State 8:03.7
5. Loyola Marymount 8:30.8
1. San Diego 7:38.7
2. Western Washington 7:46.5
3. Wilamette 7:51.5
4. Saint Mary’s 8:07.9
5. Puget Sound 8:14.1
6. Sacramento State 8:20.0
1. Gonzaga 7:07.3
2. UC Davis 7:08.3
3. Sacramento State 7:09.6
4. San Diego 7:20.6
5. UC Santa Barbara 7:23.7
6. San Diego State 7:26.6
SECOND VARSITY EIGHT
1. Gonzaga 6:47.8
2. Sacramento State 6:59.4
3. Loyola Marymount 7:09.1
4. San Diego State 7:11.7
5. Saint Mary’s 7:14.7
1. Gonzaga 6:43.5
2. Saint Mary’s 6:45.5
3. Sacramento State 6:46.0
4. Stanford Lightweights 6:48.4
5. UC Davis 6:52.3
6. Loyola Marymount 6:56.8