By Sofia Scekic
Stanford senior Emily Delleman, junior Maria Kent and sophomore Kelsey McGinley were among the 41 collegiate women selected for the women’s openweight under-23 (U23) national team camp in Iowa City.
As with the men’s event, the women’s 2020 World Rowing U23 Championships in Bled, Slovenia were canceled due to COVID-19, and the honors are now purely ceremonial. The championships, scheduled for August, were to include four boats (8+, 8-, 4+ and 4-) to be chosen from this camp, and the the team was to be coached by Iowa’s women’s coach Andrew Carter.
“Obviously all three are disappointed with the U-23 World Championships being cancelled but they also see the benefit in being selected to a virtual camp,” wrote Stanford coach Derek Byrnes in an email to The Daily. “They will get the opportunity to expand their day-to-day community through virtual meetings with other camp invitees; their workouts will be posted, so they still have a chance to compete, and there is still the chance for racing at the end of summer. US Rowing is planning a U-23 race at Princeton Training Center in early September, provided it is safe to do so.”
Two of the three women selected have experience competing at the world level already, while this year would have marked Kent’s first opportunity to compete in a World Championship regatta.
Delleman, a CRCA Second Team All-American as a junior in 2018-19, placed sixth in the quad skulls at the 2017 World U23 Championships and seventh in double skulls in 2019 with Stanford alum Elizabeth Sharis. McGinely won two bronze medals in the 4- sculls at the 2016 and 2017 World Junior Championships and a gold medal in the 4- sculls in 2018. She also became the second female rowing athlete in school history to be named PAC-12 Newcomer of the Year last season. All three women were members of the Varsity Eight which placed fourth at the NCAA Championships and second at the PAC-12 Championships last season.
The Cardinal women were able to compete in one official competition in the fall before spring sports were cancelled by the NCAA, highlighted by a repeat as collegiate champions of the Championship Eights at the Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston in October. The team also raced against Oregon State at Redwood Shores on March 7, winning three of four races just five days before their season was cut short.
“We had a very strong team in 2019 and internally we knew we were about to put a stronger team on the water this year,” Byrnes said. “Let’s just say, I am really excited for 2021.”
With uncertainty still surrounding next season and future races, Byrnes explained that the team is focusing on academics this quarter while still maintaining its training.
“On the academic front, the majority of the team is taking between 20-22 units,” he said.
Stanford suggests taking about 15 units each quarter.
“Some members of the team have been unable to leave their apartments for seven weeks now but have found unique ways to grind,” Byrnes said. “I would be embarrassed to show up out of shape knowing what some of my teammates are doing [to train] right now.”
Contact Sofia Scekic at sscekic ‘at’ stanford.edu.