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Sophomores Ready for First Race on Sunday

Maja Barnouw and UConn rowing prepare for Head of the Riverfront on Sunday.
Sept. 29, 2016

Fall Rowing Schedule

STORRS, Conn.-
On Sunday, the Head of the Riverfront in Hartford will mark the start of the competitive rowing season for the sophomores of the UConn rowing team. This may be the team’s first competition of the season, however, preparation began months before.

Three sophomores— Bridget Murphy, Micaela Nowacki, and Maja Barnouw - are excited about the work that has gone into preparing for the team’s 2016-17 campaign, after all three return with their freshman year behind them. 

“Across all boats improvements are being made we’re really starting to get back into the swing of things. I think as a team we came back ready for this season and are at a much better starting point then we were last year,” said Barnouw, a pre-kinesiology major.

Practice did not just begin with the return to campus, as the team made sure to train hard over the summer, with activities such as lifting, hiking, biking and work on an erg machine, to name a few.

Additionally the team broke up smaller workout groups to stay focused on its offseason fitness. “Something cool the seniors did this summer was they each took on a group of girls from the team. The overall goal of these groups was to keep each other motivated over the summer and stay fit. For example one week we would share our workouts, another week we shared healthy food ideas, and for another we shared what we wanted to work on for the upcoming season,” said Barnouw.



“The importance of staying in shape over the summer was stressed not only by our coaches but the team as a whole, we all wanted to come back in the best shape we could to prepare for our best season yet,” added Murphy, an economics major.

The sophomore group as a whole is 14 members strong, not counting the walk-ons the team expects to add to its final roster in the coming weeks. After a full year now on the team, the rowers feel stronger and better than ever for the next season.

Speaking to last year, Nowacki said, “I learned a lot about the techniques of rowing, and the training that goes into it. I also learned to be successful in this sport, mental strength is just as important, if not more so, than physical strength.”

To prepare for the upcoming season the rowers have not only been preparing to compete against other teams by competing with themselves.

“You can really see the depth across the team in practice, all of our boats are really competitive with each other on the water, which is super exciting and I can’t wait to see what this year has in store for us,” said Murphy.

With 20-year head coach, Jennifer Wendry, leading the team with a strong group of upperclassmen and an excited group of sophomores, UConn rowing is determined to get off to a good start on the Connecticut River on Sunday.