March 17, 2005
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Two years ago the crew programs in the West Coast Conference began competing in a head-to-head venue at the WCC Challenge in Lake Natoma. The Loyola Marymount University crew team will once again head to the WCC Challenge on March 19-20, where they will look to improve on their showing from a year ago. The Lions went 7-3 in head-to-head competition last year at the WCC Challenge. The Lions will open the challenge with Sacramento State at 8:15 a.m. The first conference show down will be against Santa Clara at 8:45 a.m.
The West Coast Conference Challenge, a preview to the WCC Championships held in April, also feature teams from outside the conference. The Lions will begin the Challenge when teh women's Novice 8 and Varsity 8 take on Sacramento State. The Novice 8 will race at 8:15 a.m. while the Varsity 8 will go at 8:30. The men will follow as they take on Santa Clara. The Novice 8 will race at 8:45 a.m. while the Varsity 8 will race at 9 a.m. After a break, the women's Novice 8 will race Santa Clara at 12:45 p.m. The men's Novice 8 will race at 1:00 p.m. against Sacramento State and the men's Varsity 8 will take on Saint Mary's at 1:15 p.m. The women will close the first day of racing with the Second Varsity 8 taking on Santa Clara at 1:30 and the Varsity 8 taking on Saint Mary's at 1:45 p.m. Sunday's racing will start with the women's Varsity 8 taking on rival Gonzaga at 8:30 a.m. and the men's Varsity 8 taking on the Bulldogs at 8:45 a.m. The women's Second Varsity 8 will race Sacramento State at 9:00 a.m., followed by the Men's Novice 8 at 9:30 a.m. against San Diego. The racing will close with the women's Novice 8 at 9:45 against Saint Mary's and then the women's Lightweight 8 taking on Stanford at 10:15.
Taking on the Bruins
For Head Coach Patrick Kelly, the races against UCLA and UC Irvine wasn't quite what he had hoped for the Loyola Marymount crew program, defeating the Anteaters but falling to UCLA in every event at Ballona Creek on Saturday morning. "All of our boats actually had a pretty good day, " said Kelly. "UCLA right now is just a little better than us, as we are a step above UCI. It is very important to be able to race quality opponents such as UCLA and UCI. At this point in the season the athletes benefit tremendously from the race experience. We're all excited about working hard this week to improve our race execution next week in Sacramento."
The Loyola Marymount University crew program competed at the 2005 Parker Cup Regatta on Saturday, March 5 in Mission Bay, CA. For the Lions', the men's Novice 8 team earned a first place finish while LMU earned second place finishes in the regatta featuring San Diego State, UC Irvine and LMU. "It was a great start to a long racing season for the men's team," said Head Coach Patrick Kelly. "It is good to get the butterflies out and be in a sprint race again. They rowed pretty well but didn't have the efficiency to stay with UCI over the last third of the race. As for the novice team, they rowed really well for their first 2k race ever." In the race, the men's novice was trailing at the half way point. "This win is a testament to their hard training, the work of their coach Pat Madigan, and the guys just keeping that heart of a Lion right through the entire race." UC Irvine won the Parker Cup on the men's side, while San Diego State won it on the women's side. As for the women's team, it was the first 2K race for many LMU athletes. "I was very pleased with the development of the true novice athletes, as evidenced by their close race with SDSU," said Kelly. "The girls were down, made a push back to within 2 seats but ran out of steam over the last 250 meters. Coach Conway has done a good job with them, and with the lightweights." Saturday was LMU's first Lightweight race in over 10 years. "It's good to a race under our belts. You want to win every time out of course, but we just didn't put together a full 2000 in any of the races. We need to keep up the boat speed more consistently to get those wins. Credit to the Aztecs. They were ready."
A Classic in San Diego
LMU women's crew team won the Varsity 8 Cal Cup at the 2004 San Diego Crew Classic. The Cal Cup Championship is the first in program history. The Lions Varsity 8 team of Blake Boyer (coxswain), Sarah Daum, Erin Ludwig, Beth Henderson, Vanessa Glendenning, Naomi Hoogesteger, Lot Keijzer, Kathryn Holzberger and Caitlin McClain finished the Grand Final in a time of 7:12.70. LMU finished nearly four seconds faster than second place Miami and eight seconds better than third place UCLA. The Lions were one of the top three crews off the line at the start, crossing the 500-meter mark in third place, three seats down on UCLA and Miami. As the crews advanced to the 1000-meter line, LMU had moved half way through UCLA, who was bow to stern with third place Miami. In what was a battle between the top three crews all the way to the last 250, LMU began to pull away from the pack as Miami took over UCLA. Crossing the line first, the Lions gained a four second victory over second place finisher Miami. Winning the Women's Cal Cup means that next year's Varsity race will be invited to compete in the prestigious Jessup-Whittier Cup along with the nation's elite collegiate teams. Also claiming a first place finish on Sunday was the LMU Men's Varsity 8. The Lions took first in the Cal Cup Third Race in a time of 6:29.5. The Lions also edged out UCLA by over three seconds and Saint Mary's by just under four seconds. San Diego, UC San Diego and Arizona State rounded out the Cal Cup-Third finish.
Thanks to impressive showings at the WCC Championship on April 30 and the Western Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championships on May 1-2, the LMU women's crew team earned individual honors to go with one of the most successful seasons in program history. Juniors Caitlin McClain and Vanessa Glendenning were both named first-team WCC All-Conference and first-team WIRA All-Association after leading their teams to the Varsity 8 Championship in both events. Joining McClain and Glendenning on the All-WIRA first-team was senior Lot Keijzer. The pair of all-conference honors in the WCC is the most ever in one season. The Varsity 8 earned first place for the first time to help five-year Head Coach Patrick Kelly to his second WCC Coach of the Year honors. The three All-WIRA selections equals last year's number as the Lions' Varsity 8 won the Grand Final championship for the second straight year. The back-to-back WIRA Championships is the first in program history and earned Kelly back-to-back WIRA Coach of the Year honors. McClain, Glendenning and Keijzer have led the Lions to new levels of success.
The Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association placed more honors on the LMU crew team as Vanessa Glendenning earned second-team West All-Region honors. The CRCA also named Caitlin McClain, Naomi Hoogesteger, Erin Ludwig and Blake Boyer to the Academic West All-Region team. McClain took the honors a step further, earning First-Team CoSIDA District VIII Academic Honors. With the first-team honor, she was a finalist for the Academic All-America honors. Completing the honors in 2004 was Hoogesteger, McClain, and Ludwig with Academic All-WCC accolades.
The 2004-05 season is the sixth for Head Coach Patrick Kelly of the men's and women's crew programs. In his five seasons, the Lions have won more Varsity 8 championships in his tenure than any other combined. The accomplishments have earned Kelly two WCC and WIRA Coach of the Year honors. Kelly rowed varsity for the Lions for four seasons and served as team captain in 1987 and 1988.
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