May 24, 2012
Every coach looks for something different in his or her athletes. With an entirely new staff leading the openweight and lightweight programs at Georgetown this year, the vision in the search for future Hoya rowers was clear: attitude, quality of character, and athletic potential. "The current team and coaching staff is excited about where we're headed," said Head Coach Miranda Paris. "We talked with many excellent high school athletes, but we were looking for athletes who were interested in being a driving force in taking this team to a higher level of performance."
Georgetown started the year with a dwindling lightweight program, but quickly resurged when joined by a large and passionate group of freshman. "This current group is fully committed to nothing less than their absolute best," remarked lightweight coach Jimmy Newcombe. In their most recent competition at the Eastern Sprints, the Varsity 8 took 4th with six freshmen in the boat, beating Princeton, who they had lost to earlier in their regular season competition. The lightweights' season will conclude with the IRA championship from May 31st -June 2nd.
Conversely, the openweights started off in September with a larger team, but needed reshaping and defining. "Our goal was to set the bar high and hold the team to that standard," said assistant coach Steve Full. "Not everyone is up for the challenge or the commitment, but we can't move forward effectively without unity." The openweight squad competed at the BIG EAST Championship with two eights, a four, and three spares. "This was the natural progression for the team this season," said Paris. "We wanted to finish the year with the people who understood what it meant to row at this level and who were committed to pushing themselves to be truly excellent. We're really excited about how far we've come and where we will go in the future with this foundation." The team earned a bronze medal in the Varsity 4 and the Varsity 8 took fourth in the tightest final in BIG EAST history, finishing 5.5 seconds behind 15th-ranked Notre Dame. The Second Varsity 8 won the petite final, finishing fifth overall.
Although the openweights are done for this season, the team and coaching staff have big plans for the future and are already looking forward next year.
Georgetown Women's Rowing Class of 2016
Abre Bokhari, Row New York/Pelham (Lightweight): "Abre is a young and talented lightweight who we really enjoyed getting to know from the start. She works extremely hard for someone so young. She has aspirations to row at an elite level and we are looking forward to helping her reach her goals. Abre has limitless potential and the persistence to get where she wants to go. She provides an attitude and a spark that I felt we needed to have in the program."
Emily Buongiorno, Merion Mercy Academy (Openweight): "Emily is a dedicated rower and a great leader on the Merion Mercy team. She has a fantastic attitude and work ethic that we really wanted to see on this team. Emily knows how to put her head down and get to work. She is a true teammate and I am positive that she will help push those around her to new levels."
Emily Carbone, Mount St. Joseph's Academy (Openweight): "Emily has been a fixture in the Mount St. Joe's top boat for the last two years. We had two girls from The Mount this past year (Meaghan Bresnahan and Maggie Rush). I was really impressed with how hard they pushed themselves and their teammates. Emily is no different. Coming from a solid program with a history of excellence, it will be exciting to have her experience blend with the rest of the incoming class and the team."
Kate Danielsen, St. Mark's School (Openweight): "Kate sought us out when we joined the Georgetown staff. She really displayed a level of interest in what we have to offer as a school and as a coaching staff that we had not seen from other recruits at that point. She is determined to push herself and her teammates to new levels and I believe she has a great deal of potential. We're looking forward to helping her reach her goals as a student-athlete."
Melissa Frazee, McLean High School (Lightweight): "Melissa competes for one of the top program lightweight programs in the area. Having Melissa come next year was huge for us. She is extremely powerful for her size. The aggression and passion she puts on the blade is one of those intangible elements that you cannot teach in rowing. She is a fierce competitor and will be a solid addition the lightweight program."
Lena Jaffe, Seattle Rowing Center (Openweight): "Lena has the ability to inspire those around her with her work ethic and focus. She is the total package: the results on and off the water to be a top recruit at any program, but even more important, the leadership skills to bring others along with her. Lena's goals for rowing and the type of team she wanted to be a part of were perfectly in line with our goals for the team and the direction of the program."
Savannah Kochinke, The Lawrenceville School (Openweight): "Savannah is a tremendous worker. After speaking with her coaches and watching her row, it was clear to me that she wants to be a boat mover. A work ethic like Savannah's is contagious and we are looking forward to having that kind of drive directly injected into the team."
Alison Nagle, Community Rowing, Inc. (Openweight): "Having spent twelve years on the Charles River, I know how challenging a river it is to navigate. Allison's experience as the top CRI coxswain will bring a great skill set to Georgetown and we feel fortunate she'll be joining us next year. She displays strong leadership qualities and a desire to help shape and make the program faster. As we looked for people with that quality, and Alison made it clear to us right away that she was up to the task."
Samantha Rhodes, NorCal (Lightweight): "Samantha started rowing last year and quickly fell in love with the sport. Being a young rower with clear athletic talent and a passion for rowing were the big three elements that impressed us with Samantha. I saw Samantha's lack of experience as a huge positive, because she had such clear drive and an incredible athletic background. She has a lot of potential and a fantastic attitude; she'll be able to make an immediate impact on the lightweight program."
Paige Strawn, Lake Union Crew (Lightweight): Paige learned to row with and spent her novice year with current Georgetown assistant coach Steve Full. "I was really excited to see Paige's name on my desk my first week here," said Full. "I knew when I first coached her that she had an amazing amount of potential. It's nice to have things come full circle. I have always loved Paige's attitude and she will fit in well with the rest of the team."