May 2, 2012
PULLMAN, Wash. - The Washington State University women's rowing team has signed six recruits to National Letters of Intent (NLIs) to compete for the Cougars beginning in the fall of 2012, head coach Jane LaRiviere announced Wednesday.
The 2012 recruiting class includes one American, Rebecca Burns (Arnold, Md.), and five student-athletes from outside the United States, Ieva Adomaviciute (Kaunas, Lithuania), Sarah Steger (Edgewater, Western Australia), Nicole Hare (Calgary, Alberta), Jordan Watson (Victoria, British Columbia), and Katrina Tarrant (Creston, British Columbia).
Rebecca Burns (5-foot-4, Arnold, Md.) is the reigning USRowing Junior Rower of the Year and served as coxswain for the Broadneck High School rowing team for four years under head coach Todd Nix. As a freshman, Burns coxed the men's novice eight to a second-place finish at the Baltimore Championships. During her sophomore campaign, Burns earned the team's Most Improved Award after leading the women's lightweight four to a second-place finish at the Mercer Lake Sprints, and a first-place finish at the Baltimore Championships. As a junior, Burns led the women's varsity four to a first-place finish among a field of 20 teams at the Head of the Occoquan. As a senior at Broadneck, she coxed the men's varsity eight, men's varsity four, and women's varsity four. In addition to local rowing, Burns coxed the Southeast men's junior four and eight at the USRowing Club National Championships. Burns won three gold medals at the USRowing Masters Championships at the conclusion of last summer. Throughout high school, Burns has coxed as many as 20 hours per week for both junior and masters crews.
"Rebecca is about as close to a professional coxswain as a young woman can get," said coach LaRiviere. "That professionalism really sold us on Miss Burns. And, once we met her, we knew that she was a Coug at heart."
Ieva Adomaviciute (6-3, Kaunas, Lithuania) competes for coaches Tomas Valciukas and Vytautas Valiauskas on the Lithuanian Junior National Team and is joining the women of Washington State Rowing to further her goal of becoming an Olympian in 2016, get a degree from WSU, and help the Cougars win races. Racing at the 2011 Junior World Championships Adomaviciute won a gold medal in the junior women's double event in a time of 7:17.87. For this accomplishment she was awarded a Distinguished Sport Service medal by the President of Lithuania.
"Ieva is a consummate competitor and elite-level oarswoman," said LaRiviere of Adomaviciute. "From cross-country ski camps to working to hold current junior, Lithuanian indoor rowing records, from swim practices to rowing against the best athletes in Lithuania, Ieva competes. She will be a welcome addition to the Cougar rowing family."
Sarah Steger (5-9, Edgewater, Western Australia) participated in cross country, swimming, and rowing at St. Peters Lutheran College and Shenton College in Western Australia. As a freshman at St. Peters Lutheran College, Steger placed first in the under-14 quad at the Head of the River for schoolgirls. As a sophomore, she earned a silver medal at the Australian National Championships while competing in the U19 eight for the West Australian Rowing Club. In addition, Steger won gold medals in the U21 double, single, and quad events at the Youth Cup in Sydney, Australia. Entering her junior year, Steger took second in the U19 quad at the National Championships. During her senior campaign, she was selected to the Western Australian Institute of Sport as well as the Australian Institute of Sport development camp. Additionally, Steger earned a fourth-place finish in the U23 pair event at the Australian National Championships.
"Sarah contacted us," said LaRiviere. "And so she knew she wanted to row for and study at Washington State. Her academic goals, athletic resume of competiveness, and great personality made her a great fit for our team."
Nicole Hare (5-9, Calgary, Alberta) competed in swimming, cross country, volleyball, and field hockey at Bowness High School in Calgary, Alberta. As a freshman at Bowness, Hare earned MVP honors on the cross country team and was named the Female Athlete of the Year. As a sophomore, she was named the Female Athlete of the Year for a second-consecutive year and earned MVP honors on both her swimming and diving team and the junior field hockey team. In addition to high school sports, Hare also competes for the Calgary Rowing Club. In 2010, she won a gold medal at the Royal Canadian Henley in a double. Hare was selected to compete at the 2011 Western Canada Summer Games where she took first-place in the singles event for Alberta. In 2011, she was named the Female Junior of the Year by both the Calgary Rowing Club and Alberta Rowing Association. Currently, Hare is competing for a spot in Canada's Junior National Team selection process.
Jordan Watson (5-11, Victoria, British Columbia) competed in rowing for four years at the Gorge Rowing and Paddling Center in Victoria, British Columbia and the Esquimalt High School rowing team under head coach Jared Csizmadia. Notably, Watson won the under-19 women's pair at the Canadian National Rowing Regatta in Welland, Ontario. She was also selected to the 2011 Western Canada Summer Games (WCSG) to represent British Columbia; as the team won the WCSG regatta. At the 2011 British Columbia Championships, Watson won the junior women's pair and placed third in the junior women's double. In 2012, Watson has placed first in junior double at the Dueling-Over-a-Grand Regatta and placed second at the Monster Erg Indoor Rowing Championship. Currently, along with future teammate Nicole Hare, Watson is competing for a spot in Canada's Junior National Team Selection process.
Katrina Tarrant (6-1, Creston, British Columbia) competed in rowing, basketball, volleyball, and swimming at Prince Charles Secondary School in Creston, British Columbia. As a freshman, Tarrant helped her volleyball team to a second-place finish in the division championships and repeated the feat as a junior. For these feats she earned two varsity letters in volleyball under head coach Colleen Douville. Tarrant was also a two-year letterwinner for basketball, as well as being named team captain her final two seasons. Relatively new to rowing, Tarrant learned to row at the Creston Rowing Club, having spent the summer of 2011 training at Victoria City Rowing Club, and is currently working in her women's single for summer 2012 competition.
"These three Canadian oarswomen round out our 2012 recruiting class and are really some of the best and brightest Canada has to offer," said LaRiviere. "These three have the competitiveness and athleticism to make an immediate positive impact on our team and they back that up with hard work in the classroom. Overall, these six women will bring a lot of race experience, personality, and strength to our already strong team. We cannot wait to get them all on campus and on the water."
The Cougars have this weekend off for graduation, before traveling to Gold River, Calif., for the Pac-12 Championships, Sunday, May 13.