Tulsa rowing starts season strong

Sports writer Isabella Musollino discusses how varsity 8+ earns Conference Honors

The Tulsa women’s rowing team had an eventful weekend at the Sunshine State Invitational. The invite, which spanned Apr. 1 and Apr. 2, brought the team action against 13 other Division I rowing teams, including AAC conference member University of Central Florida (UCF). Under new head coach Brandon Cambell and assistants Jennifer Arnold and Hugo Moon, the Golden Hurricane has left strong wins in their wake, with the Sunshine Invite being no exception.

Starting the weekend off strong in the heats, both the 1V8 and 1V4 fought hard to earn their place in the grand finals. The 1V8 took first place in their heat, grabbing the second seed in the grand finals just 0.4 seconds behind first seed Miami. The 1V4 placed third in their heat, earning them the sixth seed in the grand finals. Unfortunately, Tulsa’s 2V8 fell slightly short of grands but earned themselves the first seed of the petite finals.

On Saturday morning, the 1V8 kicked off an exciting day of racing, battling to keep their bow ball ahead of the pack in the grand finals. The Golden Hurricane took first place beating Miami by 1.66 seconds and seventh place UCF by 12.09 seconds. The 2V8 followed by leading the pack in the petite finals, finding a first place win by open water. Ending the morning, the 1V4 earned a fourth place finish in the grand finals, just 3.47 seconds behind UCF, a margin the crew is excited to close at the AAC rowing championships on May 14.

“Overall, it is a really promising set of results. There were a lot of great teams at this event, so to be this competitive is an excellent reflection of the progress the athletes have made and you can start to see the team really believing in themselves,” said Campbell. Cambell comes to Tulsa from Washington State University where he helped coach the Cougars to NCAA finishes.

The win at Sunshine Invite brought the team some exciting news in the Pocock Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association poll, which produces the national rankings for NCAA rowing each week. The team earned 61 votes in the poll, the most votes received in program history. Currently, Tulsa is ranked 25 in the country and second in the conference, boosting morale heading into the peak of their season. Southern Methodist University leads the conference with a national ranking of 15, and UCF and Old Dominion University round out the rest of the teams in the conference receiving votes.

On Apr. 5, the team received one more piece of news, the 1V8 had earned Boat of the Week honors from the AAC following their first place win at Sunshine Invite. The 1V8 was comprised of Anna Shaw, Becky Coleman, Emily Bell, Karen Undset, Darya Vyrupayeva, Madlen Markova, Ermioni Lamprianidou, Johanna Kristof and coxswain Bella Musollino. Bell and Vyrupayeva represent Tulsa’s freshman class, leaving a strong impression in their first spring season.

Tulsa will see action again on Apr. 15 in Lansing, Michigan, against University of Miami, Michigan State, and AAC conference member Temple University.

Post Author: Isabella Musollino