Up against stiff competition, the UR women’s rowing team more than held its own at this past weekend’s Head of the Potomac on Sunday, Sept. 30.
The Yellowjackets had their best finish in the Women’s Club Eight race. The eight-person squad of juniors Kristiana LaChuisa, Rhiannon Vaughn and Monika Cepulis, sophomores Jenna Kaempfer, Juliana Orlov, Stacy Miller and Allie Born, freshman Lindsey Willstatter, and freshman coxswain Emma Pollock, nabbed second place overall for the top UR finish of the day, as the group bested 13 other teams from all over the region. The team finished in a strong 16:15 — 20 seconds behind team champion TBC Racing and well ahead of third-place Alexandria Community Rowing (16:26). A second UR team composed of sophomores Serra Sevenler, Emily Wildra, Mary Willis, Karli Cozen, Lilly Camp and Alex Kuenstler, freshmen Tessa Eagle and Bella Clemente, and junior coxswain Julia Evans — mustered a fifth-place finish to complete a terrific showing in the event.
The ’Jackets faced their toughest challenge in the final women’s event of the day, during which a potent pair of Georgetown University squads awaited them in the water.
Entering their top eight rowers (Sevenler, Wildra, LaChuisa, Vaughn, Cozen, Willis, Orlov, Cepulis and Evans) to comprise the strongest possible boat, UR took fifth of nine in the hotly contested, all-collegiate Women’s Open Eight event. Two Georgetown teams took first and third in the event, while a George Washington University squad earned second to complete the top three.
The next three spots, however, were completely up for grabs, as a Saint Joseph’s University squad (10:11.0) bested the UR team (10:15.1) by just four seconds.
UR refused to let a second Saint Joseph’s crew go, however, ousting the school’s “B” team by less than one second.
The women’s team looks to tackle some of the top teams in the region and nation when it hosts the Head of the Genesee on Saturday, Oct. 13.
Bernstein is a member of the class of 2014.