April 4, 2013

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PRINCETON, N.J.-Four members of the No. 1 Virginia rowing team have been accepted to 2013 USRowing National Team camps, USRowing announced Wednesday (April 3). Senior Kristine O’Brien and sophomore Lizzy Youngling have been named to the Women’s Under-23 National Team Selection Camp, while sophomores Kaitlin Fanikos and Maddie Hilbrant have been selected for the Women’s National Team Pre-Elite Camp. In addition, junior Brandy Herald was named to the U23 camp’s wait list.

At the Under 23 National Team Selection Camp, O’Brien and Youngling will compete for spots in the women’s eight and women’s quadruple sculls crews that will represent the U.S. at the World Rowing Under-23 Championships July 24-28 in Linz, Austria. In addition, the camp may select crews in the women’s four, pair and double sculls that will compete at the USRowing Under-23 National Team Trials June 23-26 in West Windsor, N.J. A full team roster will be named by July 10.

The pre-elite camp is focused on developing athletes for the under 23 and senior national teams. The goal of the camp is to teach skills necessary to compete at the elite level by introducing and developing sculling, gaining fitness and increasing strength to weight ratio.

O’Brien was a part of the U.S. women’s eight that won gold at the 2012 World U23s in Trakai, Lithuania, and finished seventh as a part of the women’s quad at the 2011 World U23 regatta in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The Massapequa Park, N.Y., native claimed the NCAA Championship with the Virginia Varsity Eight, is a two-time CRCA First-Team All-American and was voted the 2012 USRowing’s Fan’s Choice Collegiate Rower of the Year.

A native of Westport, Conn., Youngling was a member of the U.S. junior national team in 2010 and 2011, twice competing at the World Rowing Junior Championships. In 2011, she finished fourth as a part of the women’s quadruple sculls, while in 2010, she placed seventh in the women’s pair with UVa teammate Hemingway Benton.

Fanikos, a native of Boston, Mass., was a member of UVa’s Second Varsity Eight that placed fifth at the 2012 NCAA Championships and was awarded the Thomas Temple Allan Rookie of the Year honor at the team’s end-of-the-year banquet.

A native of Winnetka, Ill., Hilbrant helped lead Northeastern to the Colonial Athletic Association Championship in 2012 before transferring to Virginia. She stroked the Huskies’ Second Varsity Eight.

Herald, a native of Portland, Ore., was a member of the UVa Second Varsity Eight that placed fifth at the 2012 NCAA Championships. She was a part of the Varsity Eight that won the Championship Eights at the 2012 Head of the Charles and won two gold medals in the U.S. women’s eight at the World Junior Championships in 2008 and 2009.

The top-ranked Cavaliers return to action April 6-7 for the San Diego Crew Classic in San Diego, Calif.