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Lions Compete In Seven Grand Finals at WIRAs

April 30, 2006

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - LMU finished second in the men's and women's overall points standings at the WIRA Championships this weekend at Lake Natoma in Sacramento, CA. The Lions advanced to the Grand Final in seven of eight events, placing second in the women's varsity 8 race. In addition, the men's varsity 8 placed highest of the WCC schools for the first time in program history.

The women's varsity 8 was edged by Sacramento State in the final race of the weekend. The Lions had the fastest overall time in the heats on Saturday, but fell to the Hornets by two seconds. Sac State finished with a time of 6:35.9, while LMU earned a silver medal for the second straight year with a time of 6:39.0.

Members of the varsity 8 boat were coxswain Jennifer Guess, stroke Liz Stewart, Carla Conway, Christina Duechle, Courtney Cox, Alli Mitrovich, Kristi Adams, Erin Ludwig and bow Jill Austin.

The men's varsity 8 advanced to the Grand Final after placing second in their heat on Saturday. The Lions defeated Gonzaga by just over one second, and was the only WCC representative in the Grand Final. LMU placed 6th in the Grand Final with a time of 6:05.7. Colorado won the men's varsity 8 with a time of 5:54.0.

Members of the varsity 8 boat were coxswain Jennifer Garrett, stroke Jim Puccetti, Landon Storaasli, Tim Santy, Warren Anderson, Brennan Wynn, Perkin DiGrazia, Scott Wike and David Cronin.

LMU's women's novice 4 earned a bronze medal with a third place finish in the Grand Final. The Lions placed second in their heat on Saturday behind Saint Mary's. In Sunday's final, LMU finished third with a time of 7:30.4. Saint Mary's won the women's novice four title with a time of 7:20.8.

The women's varsity 8 boat included coxswain Amy Guion, stroke Sydney Johnson, Jen Topor, Whitney Sholl and bow Lindsay Vitort.

The Lions' second varsity 8 placed fourth in the Grand Final. LMU placed second in Saturday's heats, defeating WCC opponents Gonzaga and Santa Clara to move into the top final on Sunday. LMU's time of 6:45.6 was good for fourth place, behind San Diego State, UC Davis, and Gonzaga.

The women's second varsity 8 boat included coxswain Mona Sumibcay, stroke Kathryn Maloney, Bettina Messerli, Meggan Brunette, Janelle Brunette, Jen Glassman, Marni Hietbrink, Renee Thompson and bow Larissa Meltz.

The men's second varsity 8 did not have heats, and raced as a final on Sunday. LMU placed 5th. Members of the boat included Lisa Mercurio, Adam Baker, Mark Stellner, Jordan Stone, Hamilton Hiatt, Scott Henderson, Kevin Druffel-Rodriguez, Brandon Sorbom and Jordan Perez.

The women's novice 8 finished 6th in the Grand Final on Sunday. LMU placed second in its heat on Saturday to advance to the top race. The boat included coxswain Amy Guion, Whitney Sholl, Sydney Johnson, Jen Topor, Lindsay Vitort, Brooke LeJeune, Andrea Belluz, Jen Woo and Courtney Bannerman.

LMU's men's varsity 4 advanced to the Grand Final with a second place finish in its heat on Saturday. The Lions placed 6th in the final on Sunday with a time of 6:37.2. Western Washington won the event with a time of 6:25.7. The boat included coxswain Vanessa Garrett, Adam Baker, Mark Stellner, Scott Henderson, and Kevin Druffel-Rodriguez.

The men's novice 4 placed third in its heat on Saturday morning and advanced to the Petite final on Saturday afternoon. The Lions had a strong race in the Petite final, placing second with a time of 7:14.2. San Diego won the Petite Final with a time of 7:12.3.

Members of the men's novice 4 boat were coxswain Randy Hellman, William Lewis, Hansen Perkins, Brian Slaught and Phillip Massari.

Based on LMU's overall depth, both men's and women's teams placed second for the Overall Points Trophy. In addition, the LMU women placed second for the Efficiency Trophy.

- GO LIONS! -