Crew Concludes Season at National Invitational Rowing Championship

Simmons University Crew First Varsity Eight

WORCESTER, Mass. -- The Simmons University women's crew team competed at the National Invitational Rowing Championship on Lake Quinsigamond today in Worcester, Mass. to conclude its season.

The Sharks finished sixth in the morning heat of the first varsity eight with a time of 7:13.770 to place ahead of Connecticut College to advanced to the Third Level Final. Worcester Polytechnic Institute finished first with a mark of 6:50.558. The 1V8 clocked in at 7:19.279 on the 2,000-meter course in the Third Final to finish sixth overall, while University of New Hampshire won the race with a time of 7:10.947 in a race that separated all six boats by less than nine seconds. 

The Simmons First Eight was comprised of senior coxswain Melissa Morton (Somers, Conn.) followed by sophomore Samantha Kelsey (Salt Lake City, Utah) in the stroke seat, first year Emily Niemi (Santa Clarita, Calif.), sophomore Steffi Gaehde (Brookline, Mass.), senior Peizhu Pam Qian (Beijing, China/Developing Virtue Secondary Girls School (Calif.)), juniors Sabrina Belozerova (Newton, Mass.) and Hannah Dike (Leominster, Mass.), senior Nicole Lee (North Reading, Mass.) and first year Maggie O'Byrne (Boston, Mass.)

Morton remarked, "The one-vee fought hard staying strong with RIT, Clark, and Mount Holyoke in the final. Despite the weather conditions, there was never a stroke that I did not see my rowers give less than 150%. I cannot wait to see what this team does in the future. Go Sharks!"

The second varsity eight placed sixth in the day's first heat with a time of 7:37.154, while Wesleyan University won the race in 7:03.254. The Sharks eight later finished sixth in the Third Level Final with a mark of 8:04.709. Simmons was led by junior coxswain Ally Fecteau (Burlington, Conn.) with first year Maude Elovitz (Lake Oswego, Ore.) sitting in the stroke seat, followed by classmate Kat Jones (Methuen, Mass.), junior Lilly Pennington (Watertown, Mass.), senior Christine Yu (Plainville, Mass.), first years Anna Boyles (Ridgeland, Miss.)Chloe Janes (Brookline, Mass.)Jen-Li Barry (Santa Barbara, Calif.) and Maya Wyse (Singapore)

Fecteau explained, "The two-vee had a solid start and fought hard for the seniors for their last race, nearly pushing ahead of Mount Holyoke but coming short just 0.02 seconds behind, an amazing final race of the season." 
The Sharks women's four finished its day by placing second in the Petite Final with a time of 8:48.587 to place ahead of University of Rochester and behind New Hampshire's B squad. Simmons turned in a time of 8:32.081 in the morning's session to clip Rochester. 
First year coxswain Ginny Strasser (Cambridge, Mass.) guided the Sharks quartet with first year Mackenzie Gondek (Waban, Mass.) pulling from the stroke seat, before junior Rebecca Ramsey (Jefferson, Mass.), sophomore April Miller (Newton, N.H.) and junior Chloe Feuerstein (Winchester, Mass.)
Strasser said, "We finished finals and went straight into our last race. Goodbyes are hard, but we raced harder."