EDISON, N.J. – The Jacksonville University women's rowing team swept the competition at the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Championship this past Friday, and the effort continued Wednesday afternoon when the league announced its postseason awards.
Sweeping all four of the league's top honors, Jacksonville's varsity four, second varsity eight and varsity eight were all named All-MAAC while head coach Mike Lane was voted the 2017 Coach of the Year.
The MAAC also announced its all-academic team where eight Dolphin student-athletes were recognized for their scholastic achievements.
"The honors from the MAAC Conference is just icing on the cake," said Lane, "being recognized by our peers as boats of the year and coach of the year is a huge honor and testament to the hard work our athletes have put in this year. I could not be more proud of our team and their accomplishments.
"The coach of the year honor is way less about me and all about our athletes buying into the process, working hard and executing the plan. It is also about the tireless efforts of our assistant coaches who have to put up with me on a daily basis! I can't thank them enough for their effort in making JU rowing faster."
Coaching Jacksonville to back-to-back titles en route to his second Coach of the Year honor, Lane's second year at the helm of the program was highlighted by the team winning every event at the league regatta for the first time in JU history.
The Dolphins' varsity four boat included coxswain Lauren Whetzel and rowers Maddie Black, Katharina Dinsmore, Tori West, and Alexis Feraco. At the championship, the boat pulled ahead of Marist in its last 500 meters to clock a first place time of 8:21.909.
Jacksonville's second varsity, manned by coxswain Emily Niermann and rowed by Sara Miller, Rochelle Martinez, Yailene Herrera, Jennifer Pavlik, Samantha Amadio, Nicole Martin, Alex Pulliam, and Emily Woods, finished its grand final with a time of 7:28.418, and its varsity boat earned a gold medal with a final race time of 7:21.190. The boat was crewed by coxswain Claire McLenna and by rowers Delaney Plunkett, Sarah Goodman, Veronika Stasaityte, Stacey Price, Madison Boyer, Jessica Shipkowski, Meg Coyle, and Victoria Tkacz.
Both of the eight races were handily decided.
To be eligible for the MAAC All-Academic Team, a student-athlete must complete two semesters at their institution and hold a cumulative grade point average of 3.20 on a 4.0 scale. Black, Coyle, Pavlik, Price, Pulliam, Shipkowski, West and Woods higlighted the list alongside 112 student-athletes from around the conference.