Three Stanford women rowers have been named to the 2010 U.S. Under-23 National Team roster -- Lindsay Meyer, Grace Luczak and Julie Smith. The trio will compete at the World Rowing Under-23 Championships scheduled for July 22-25 in Brest, Belarus.
The three are all two-year members of the Stanford I Eight, and were all part of the boat that captured the I Eight NCAA Championship and helped Stanford to its first-ever team NCAA title in 2009.
"Grace, Julie and Lindsay are wonderful teammates who will be fantastic representatives for Team USA," said Stanford head coach Yasmin Farooq. "They're racing in three different boats, which will be a change of pace for them, but you can bet they'll be sending a lot of support to each other, and their USA teammates, all the way through the finals."
Meyer, who will compete solo in the women's single sculls event, and Smith, the bow seat for the U.S. women's four, earned their spots on the U.S. team by winning their respective races at the Under-23 Trials in late June. Luczak, who will row in the No. 6 seat for the U.S. women's eight, earned her place through the U.S. Under-23 camp.
Meyer, a 2008 Olympian, finished fifth with the U.S. women's quad at the Beijing Games.
"Lindsay's first love is rowing the single, the event where she won a bronze medal at the Junior Worlds as a 17-year old," Farooq said. "She's a killer competitor, and I know she's relishing this opportunity to show what she can do. She may be rowing this one solo, but she knows she's got 40 Stanford teammates back home pulling for her, too."
Luczak, who transferred to Stanford two years ago from Michigan, has been a part of the Cardinal I Eight in her time on The Farm, and later this month will be part of the U.S. Eight. Last year, she rowed for the U.S. Under 23 Eight in Racice, Czech Republic, earning a silver medal while also finishing fifth in the women's pair at the event.
"It is a real honor to represent the USA," Luczak said. "We have such an amazing group of people on the team this year and I'm really excited to be going to Belarus with two of my Stanford teammates. One more week in Princeton, as we continue to put in the miles and work toward rowing the fastest race at Worlds. Can't wait to race!"
Smith, meanwhile, has been a two-year member of the Stanford I Eight after walking onto the team in 2008. She will get her first taste of Under 23 World Championships action in Belarus with the women's four.
Recruited to Stanford to swim, Smith caught an illness that ended her swimming career, and led her to walk on to the rowing team. She would go on to make the I Eight and win an NCAA title, setting course records at Pac-10s and NCAAs along the way.
"When I was recruited to come to Stanford, I was asked to state my long-term goals," Smith noted. "Without hesitation I answered that I wanted to represent my country. I am so thrilled and proud to be able to compete for the United States this summer and hopefully again in the future. I am enormously indebted to Stanford Rowing and my parents for helping make this dream a reality."
Women's field hockey
Tara Danielson has been named head coach of the women's field hockey team. Danielson becomes the sixth head coach in the history of the program and replaces Lesley Irvine, who accepted a position as Associate Athletics Director/Senior Woman Administrator at Bowling Green State University last month after seven years at the helm.
"I am excited to be part of a long-standing tradition of academic and athletic achievement at Stanford," said Danielson. "I am eager to build on the program's recent successes and contribute to the rich history of athletic accomplishments. I am grateful for this opportunity and look forward to becoming part of the Stanford community."
In addition to enjoying an extensive international playing career, Danielson has developed a reputation as a pioneer within the field hockey community through her efforts on the developmental level while implementing several successful outreach programs.
Danielson also was a member of the USA Field Hockey National Team, training and competing at the Olympic level from 1998-2005 while participating in 89 international contests during that span. In addition to representing Team USA at international events such as the Pan American Games, World Cup and Olympic qualifying, Danielson was also a member of Team USA's National Indoor Field Hockey squad for two seasons (2005-06).
Stanford (17-5, 5-1 NorPac) is coming off its best season in program history in 2009, establishing a school record with 17 victories. The Cardinal captured the NorPac Tournament championship for the third straight season and remained a fixture in the national rankings for more than two months. Stanford won its second NCAA Play-In game in three seasons and reached the NCAA Tournament for the ninth time in school history. Stanford's record-setting season was due in large part to its high-powered offense, as the Cardinal established single-season school records in goals (87), assists (60), points (234) and shots (410).