GNAC Dominates CRCA Division II All-America Team
The 11 All-Americans for the GNAC is the most since the conference began sponsoring rowing in 2019-20.
The 11 All-Americans for the GNAC is the most since the conference began sponsoring rowing in 2019-20.

Friday, July 14, 2023

PORTLAND, Ore. – The GNAC’s dominance in Division II rowing continues with conference athletes claiming 11 of 14 positions on the Pocock/College Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) Division II Women’s Rowing All-America Team.

The conference received seven of nine first-team selections and four of five second-team selections. The total is the most for the GNAC since it started sponsoring rowing as a championship sport in the 2019-20 season.

Division II champion Cal Poly Humboldt and national runner-up Central Oklahoma each saw four rowers recognized. The Lumberjacks were represented on the first team by seniors Dana Foley and Molly Urtz and sophomore Sonja Scollon and on the second team by junior Cassidy Hollenbeck.

The Bronchos netted two first-team selections in junior Faith Brooks and senior Kenna Chamlee. Their second-team selections included freshman Lauren Clark and junior Emily Overholt.

Seattle Pacific senior Macie Leach received first-team honors while senior Jacinta Grandel was named to the second team. Western Washington received one first-team selection in senior Clarice Ruhlin-Hicks.

The four Cal Poly Humboldt rowers comprised nearly half of the team’s varsity 8+ crew that led the Lumberjacks to its first Division II championship since 2014. At the national regatta, the Lumberjacks rowed to a four-second victory in the grand final over Central Oklahoma. Earlier in May, the Jacks again built a four-second cushion to win at the GNAC Championships over the Bronchos as Cal Poly Humboldt placed second as a team.

Foley was named the GNAC Rower of the Year while Scollon picked up Coxswain of the Year honors. Urtz was named First Team All-GNAC.

Like their Humboldt counterparts, all four Central Oklahoma rowers were members of the varsity 8+ crew that went toe-to-toe with the Lumberjacks at both the GNAC Championships and the Division II Championships. Central Oklahoma was a one-point winner over Humboldt at the GNAC Championships for the program’s second title in three years. Brooks, Clark and Overholt were First Team All-GNAC selections.

Leach, the 2022 GNAC Rower of the Year, rowed in the No. 2 seat of the varsity 8+ for Seattle Pacific at both the GNAC Championships and NCAA Championships. She was a First Team All-GNAC selection. Grandel rowed in the stroke seat of the varsity 8+ which placed third in the grand final at the NCAA Championships and third at the GNAC Championships.

Ruhlin-Hicks, who was a First Team All-GNAC selection, a College Sports Communicators Academic All-American and a repeat winner of the NCAA Elite 90 Award, rowed in the No. 7 seat of the varsity 8+ for the Vikings at the GNAC Championships and NCAA Championships.

The conference’s four teams swept the top four places at the NCAA Championships. After the championship for Humboldt, Central Oklahoma placed second with Seattle Pacific third and Western Washington fourth.

It is the second straight First Team All-America award for both Leach and Ruhlin-Hicks. Brooks and Seeley were named Second Team All-Americans in 2022.