May 16, 2001

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State women’s rowing team was one of 10 teams selected by the NCAA Women’s Rowing committee to compete at the NCAA Championships, held Thursday-Sunday, May 24-27, at Lake Lanier in Gainesville, Ga. The Buckeyes are making their second-consecutive appearance at the NCAA championships, co-hosted this year by the University of Central Florida and the Lake Lanier Rowing Club. The events are the First Varsity Eight, Second Varsity Eight and Varsity Fours, each covering a 2,000-meter course.

Ten teams were selected by an at-large seven-member Women’s Rowing Committee. Besides OSU, other Big Ten representatives are No. 2 Michigan and Iowa, marking the third-consecutive year three Big Ten teams were selected for the championships. Defending National Champion Brown, California, Harvard, Princeton, Boston University, Virginia and Washington also were selected. Nine eight-women boats from institutions not chosen to compete also were selected. They are: Michigan State, Ithica, Rutgers, Southern California, Syracuse, Wesleyan (Conn.) Western Washington, Williams College and Yale

“It’s a great field,” Andy Teitelbaum, OSU head coach, said. “There is going to be some extremely difficult races ahead for us. There is speed everywhere.”

OSU finished ninth at the 2000 NCAA Championships, held March 25-28, 2000 at the Cooper River in Camden County, N.J. The Buckeyes finished the final day with 13 points, tying them with Harvard. OSU had placed higher in the First Varsity Eight, giving it the higher team standing (9th). Brown captured its second-consecutive team championship after finishing first in the second varsity and varsity eight races. Washington, Virginia, California and Michigan rounded out the Top 5 in the standings. OSU finished second in the Varsity Fours Petite Finale with a time of 8:12.50. In the First Varsity Eight OSU finished third in the Petite Final (7:16.70). OSU finished fifth in the Second Varsity Petite Final (6:58.10). QUOTING COACH TEITELBAUM
On being selected for the second time
“We’re glad we got selected. We had a good year. We raced well, particularly at the conference championships and the regional championships. I think our performance warranted our selection. We felt after the racing we had done, we deserved to be chosen and we were.

“It’s a lot different than a year ago, when we were jumping up and down on selection day. I don’t think we were on pins and needles this time. I think we understand getting selected is an important step, one we took last season. Now, its a question of how deep in the field can we go.”

With Michigan State’s at-large bid in the Varsity Eight, four of the 14 teams in the Central Region will be represented at the finals – all Big Ten schools.

“The Central Region has really become a strong region,” Teitelbaum said. “We have four schools that are going to be represented. To have four schools in such a small region at the NCAA championships really shows the high level of competition in our region.”

OSU has faced nine of the opponents in the championship field this season. Teitelbaum said the level of competition his squad has faced all season should be an advantage at the championships.

“The only schools we lost to are Princeton, Brown, Michigan and Southern California,” he said. “We lost to Michigan State and beat them three times. We had probably one of the most difficult schedules of anyone this season. We have seen a lot of speed already and hopefully that has prepared us for the speed that we’re going to see at the championships.”

Mindy Stauffer was held out of the central regionals with an injury, but is expected to return for the NCAA championships, Teitelbaum said.

“We raced at Central Regionals with a pretty big injury in our second varsity, Mindy Stauffer,” he said. “She stayed out with the hopes we would race well enough so we would get selected and she could return for the NCAAs. We’ll probably have all of our best rowers in the boat for the championships.”

“We got beat pretty good by Princeton and Brown, and then at the Buckeye Invitational Michigan and USC beat us. At the time, we weren’t sure what was causing that. We made some changes in the varsity eight. Based on the way we raced at Big Tens and Centrals, it would seem the boat is far more competitive.

OSU is one of the few schools still in session because it is on quarters, not semesters. While many teams will spend the 10 days preparing for the championships and nothing else, the Buckeyes also have school. Teitelbaum said there is good and bad in the scenario.

“One of the biggest difficulties we have to deal with is virtually everyone else in the field is done with school,” he said. “So, they’re going to be able to spend the next 10 days, training, resting and preparing, while our athletes are staying up all night, taking midterms and doing all the things that students need to do to pass classes.

“That’s just the way it is. We can’t do anything about it. We need to manage those 10 days the best we can. We can’t waste rest. It doesn’t need to be a disadvantage. There is a very real advantage to staying in you routine. It’s a double-edged sword. It could work well for us.”

With a NCAA experience after qualifying last season, Teitelbaum is anxious to see how the Buckeyes will respond, having been to the finals last season.

“I’m interested to see how we respond now that this is our second time. The first time everything was new. We didn’t have any athletes in the program who had been to the NCAAs before. That is no longer the case. Given the change of perspective and expectations, it will be interesting to see how that effects our race.”