No. 7 Spartan Crew Rows To A Strong Start At 2002 NCAA Championships

May 31, 2002

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - The Michigan State women's crew is already making waves after day one of the 2002 NCAA Women's Rowing Championships hosted by Indiana University. The Spartans are ranked No. 7 in the USRowing/CRCA Coaches poll, and face the top-ranked teams in the country over the three-day event.

MSU's first varsity four had the strongest finish for the team this morning, taking second in its heat with a time of 8:13.88. The Spartans will advance to the semifinals on Sat., June 1. Harvard won the varsity four heat at 8:04.69, while Brown University clocked an 8:02.78, the fastest time in the event.

The Spartan varsity four consists of Stacia Beiniks (Charlton, N.Y.) as coxswain, Stacey Atkinson (Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich.), LaToyia Bowman (Detroit, Mich.), Heather Underwood (Bay City, Mich.), and Erin Robertson (Middleville, Mich.).

The Spartans' second varsity eight will also advance to Saturday's semifinal race. The boat finished with a time of 7:17.55 to finish fourth in its heat, just .75 seconds behind Princeton (7:16.80). Brown won the heat at 7:10.45, while Virginia followed with a time of 7:13.93. The University of Washington rowed the fastest time of the event at 7:09.89.

The eight boat included coxswain Michelle Fix (Ada, Mich.), Amy Silder (Naperville,Ill.) as stroke, Mollie Hill (Cowra, Australia), Ashley Cunningham (Grand Rapids, Mich.), Beth Kaupa (Rochester Hills, Mich.), Amy Pennington (Nashville, Mich.), Laurie Kozlakowski (Waterford, Conn.), Ty Middleton (Gaylord, Mich.), and Katie Issacs (N.Tonawanda, N.Y.).



Michigan State's first varsity eight did not advance to the semifinals, finishing 7:03.30 for last place in their morning heat. The Spartans rowed in the repechage and clocked a 6:50.13 to take seventh place. MSU will next row in the consolation finals on Saturday.

The championship boats will launch tomorrow with the varsity four national semi-finals beginning at 9:30 a.m. The second varsity eight semi-finals start at 10:00 a.m. All times are Eastern Standard Time.