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Lions Defend Parker Cup This Saturday

March 1, 2007

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The 2007 LMU crew season begins this Saturday as the Lions open the campaign at the Parker Cup at Ballona Creek. LMU will be represented in seven races, including the men's varsity 8 where LMU earned the Parker Cup with a win last year. The Lions are coming off of their most successful season after winning the 2006 WCC Championship.

Race Schedule (all races held in Ballona Creek):
9:15 - Women's Varsity 4 (LMU, San Diego State)
9:30 - Men's JV8 (LMU, UC Irvine)
9:45 - Men's Novice 4 (UC Irvine, San Diego State)
10:00 - Women's JV8 (LMU, San Diego State)
10:15 - Men's Varsity 8 (LMU, UC Irvine, San Diego State)
10:30 - Women's Varsity 8 (LMU, San Diego State, UC Irvine)
10:45 - Women's Novice 4 (San Diego State, UC Irvine, San Diego State 2)
11:00 - Women's Novice 8 (LMU, UC Irvine, San Diego State)
11:15 - Men's Novice 8 (LMU, San Diego State, UC Irvine)
11:45 - Awards Ceremony

LMU's Jane Browne-Bove Boathouse
Located at 13669 Fiji Way, in Marina del Rey, CA, 90292, the boathouse is accessed by way of the Fisherman's Village parking lot.

Directions:405 Fwy North or South to 90 Fwy, the Marina del Rey Fwy. Take 90 west to Mindinao. Left onto Mindinao to Admiralty. Left to Fiji. Right on Fiji. Fiji runs into the marina, bends along Fisherman's Village, then circles back onto itself.

From LMU:North on Lincoln into Marina del Rey. Left on Fiji. Follow as below...

Accessing Boathouse: As Fiji just begins to bend left, look for the first driveway/entrance to Fisherman's Village. Turn right into this entrance. After going through the parking gate, turn to the right and look for parking. Boathouse is just down off the promenade walkway towards your right.

Parking: Depending on the time of day, you may be charged for parking in Fisherman's Village. We can stamp all tickets to validate for 2 hours. Thereafter the charge is 75 cents/half hour. Free parking is available at DOCK 52 Public Lot. Dock 52 is located 1/8 mile from intersection of Admiralty and Fiji, on Fiji, on your right as you proceed into the marina. It is a few minutes walk up Fiji from Dock 52 to the LMU Boathouse.

Season OutlookThe 2006 season was an exciting one for the LMU crew program. Thingsstarted well, with the men's varsity 8 going undefeated in March, andfinished well with both programs coming out on top of the WCC. With aconference title to defend, the Lions are excited to begin 2007.

Women's Outlook
LMU captured its first ever WCC Women's Rowing Championship last season over defending champion Gonzaga. The Lions finished first in the V8, 2nd in the 2V8, and 2nd in the V4 to finish even with the Zags for overall points. LMU was awarded the crown based on the finish in the tiebreaker event, the V8.

Returning rowers that will make up the V and 2V 8s include senior CourtneyCox, juniors Alli Mitrovich, Jill Austin, Marni Hietbrink, Janelle Brunette, and Jen Glassman and sophomores Jen Topor, Sydney Johnson, and Brooke LeJeune. Junior Kathryn Holzberger is back on the water after a year away, as is Becky Nolan. The strength of the group is bolstered by the addition of juniors Stephanie Speer and Molly Stewart, along with freshmen Alexa Aftias-Mertz and Adrienne Lindstrom. Junior year coxswains Jennifer Guess and Candice Matheny will take the helms of the eights.

Cox, Holzberger, and Mitrovich will serve as team captains this season.

The Lions charge into the 2007 season with an energetic young group. Afterlosing a number of athletes to graduation, the squad will look to learn and grow through frequent early season racing. LMU will have a challengingMarch, facing San Diego State, UC Irvine, UCLA, and USC. Another trip to the San Diego Crew Classic Whittier Cup kicks off April with the WCCChampionships wraping up what promises to be an exciting month.

The Lions will also race a Lightweight 8 at a number of events this springas the program grows, establishing this boat as a regular unit. Athletesinclude juniors Larissa Meltz, Kathryn Maloney, Jen Woo, Jill Austin,Courtney Bannerman and freshmen Ashton Nielson, Liz Baxter, Talya Courtney, and Brittany Ybarra. Sophomore Amy Guion guides the crew from the coxswain's perch in the stern. The crew will be challenged with a raceschedule that includes the San Diego Crew Classic and the WindermereRegatta, among others. The lightweight National Championship will be held at the IRA Regatta in late May in Cherry Hill, New Jersey.

Men's Outlook
The fall season was quite successful for the Lions. The Varsity 8 repeatedas winners at the Head of the Marina and bettered last year's finish at the Newport Autumn Rowing Festival. This January, the Lions had an impressive showing at the Long Beach Indoor Erg Sprints, earning seven medals on the men's side.

The Lions take to the water this spring with seven athletes from last year's varsity team. They will rely heavily on a few new faces to fill some gaps in their lineup. "We have a fairly young squad this year, with big shoes to fill, but they are committed and willing to push," says varsity men's coach Brooks Jones.

Having just completed four years of rowing himself, former Lion andfirst-year coach Adam Baker will be responsible for the development of thefreshmen. "I am very excited to have Adam on board. He has a wonderfulunderstanding of the rowing stroke and is very articulate in hiscommunication with the novices," said Jones. "This should be a wonderfulseason for the first-year rowers."

Seniors Kevin Druffel-Rodriguez and Tim Santy lead the way as co-captainsand the only seniors on the team. Having both rowed since they werefreshman, they hope to end their careers on a high note and bring homenumerous victories for LMU.

Santy, Vanessa Garrett, Landon Storaasli, David Cronin, and Scott Wikereturn from the 2006 varsity 8. Druffel-Rodriguez and Mark Stellner areboth coming off strong seasons in the 2006 varsity 4. The second yearrowers include Hamilton Hiatt, Jordan Perez, Hansen Perkins, and BrandonSorbom.

Along with four second-year rowers from last year's novice team, LMUwelcomes transfer coxswain Whitney Powell from Orange Coast College.Further, thirteen novice (first-year collegiate) rowers add to the ranks.

This year the varsity team will open the season at home racing for theParker Cup against UCI and SDSU. Next up is a dual with UCLA followed by amulti-team regatta in Long Beach. Along with San Diego Crew Classic, theUSC Invitational, and the WIRA Championships, the men's varsity 8 willtravel to Redwood Shores for the first time to compete at the WindermereInvitational hosted by Stanford.