Head Coach Doug Wright
Nov. 21, 2013
DALLAS (SMU) – Seven student-athletes have signed National Letters of Intent to compete for the SMU rowing team, Head Coach Doug Wright announced.
“I am very impressed with this group we have coming in next fall,” Wright said. “They all know how to win and what is required to get to that level.”
Hannah Dart, Angelica Greene, Kelly McGowan, Madelaine Rueda, Alyssa Sands, Alexandra Savoca and Lauren Vanek will all join the Mustangs for the 2014-15 school year.
Dart, a native of Australia, currently trains at the Mercantile Rowing Club in Melbourne, which is home to more than 30 members of the Australian Olympic Rowing Team. An experienced rower with a solid work ethic, Dart most recently placed first in both the Head of the Schoolgirls regatta and the Victorian State Championships.
“Hannah is sure to bring that competitive edge to our team,” Wright said.
Florida native Greene joins the program after successful rowing and weightlifting careers. Her weightlifting background includes a second-place finish at the 2013 Florida Weightlifting Championships. On the water, she finished third in the mixed 2x at this year’s Head of the South. Greene has also been invited to the US Junior National Team Sculling Development Camp.
“We are excited about Angie, her combination of powerlifting and endurance work will help her be a great success in rowing,” Wright said. “Her weightlifting background will add another dimension to our team next year.”
McGowan, a native of Philadelphia, is an experienced rower and field hockey player. She helped her crew to a 4x victory at the Stotesbury Cup regatta last season and was part of a 4x group that placed second at the Independence Day regatta. She also helped her field hockey team at the Episcopal Academy to a one loss season her season year.
“We are excited to have Kelly as part of this incoming class,” Wright said. “She is a great athlete and I’m excited for her to improve her times both on the erg and water.”
Rueda comes to SMU following a successful career as a coxswain with the Essex Rowing Club in which she was a member of a crew that placed second at the US Rowing Club National Championship in 2011. In 2012, she helped crews to second and third place finishes at the event.
“Maddie is a smart, talented coxswain with the kind of mindset and passion we are looking for,” Wright said. “Her love for racing is evident from her commitment to the sport and the success her crews have had.”
Sands, who is no stranger to the Metroplex, placed first in the 1x at both the Head of the Oklahoma and Head of the Colorado this season. She also earned a third place finish in the event at the Head of the Hooch, and was part of a mixed 2x group that finished first.
“We are excited that Alyssa decided to stay close to home,” said Wright. “She has a great presence and will have an immediate impact on our team’s speed. She is a very proficient sculler and has incredible boat-moving skills.”
During her junior season, Savoca helped lead her varsity 8+ crew to wins at the GMS regatta and Saratoga Spring Invitational, the group also placed fourth at the Northeast District Championship.
“We look forward to adding Alex’s competitive nature to our culture of winning here,” Wright said. “She’s had great success on the water throughout high school.”
Vanek, a member of the St. Louis Rowing Club, picked up rowing after a successful volleyball career. In her first year with the club, her crews medaled in ever event raced.
“Lauren has continued to improve her level of aerobic fitness and rowing skills,” Wright said. “We look forward to watching Lauren throughout her senior year. She will only get faster and more skillful.”
“I look forward to providing this class with a supportive, challenging and competitive environment where their skills as rowers, students and leaders will be developed to help move our team into the national rankings and contribute on a much larger global scale upon graduation from SMU,” Wright added.
The Mustangs are back in action to being the spring portion of their schedule on March 15 when they host Creighton at White Rock Lake.