Kansas Rowing Heads to the Hooch

Nov. 3, 2011

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Head coach Rob Catloth and the University of Kansas rowing team are set for their final competition of the fall season as the Jayhawks travel to Chattanooga, Tenn., Nov. 5-6, for the Head of the Hooch.

The team is back in the water after a month of training and preparation. Kansas will look to outdo its first meet this season, the Head of the Oklahoma, when the Jayhawks had several top-10 finishes.

“Our fitness has improved because we’ve had a lot of personal records both on the rowing machines and in some of the long distance runs we’ve done,” said the 16-year head coach. “We’re pretty pleased with the progression of everybody’s fitness level. Because rowing is an endurance sport, fitness is a big deal.”

This will be the third consecutive year that the Jayhawks will participate in the Head of the Hooch. KU has had success at the Hooch in recent years, as Kansas had 10 top-10 finishes a year ago. Senior Melanie Luthi hopes to continue her success as she placed third in the championship single last season. Luthi also placed third this season at the Head of the Oklahoma in the collegiate single.

As a team, the Jayhawks will be participating in the women’s championship eight, women’s college novice eight, women’s championship double and championship four on day one. On Sunday, Kansas will compete in the championship single and open eight.

The Head of the Hooch will give the Jayhawk rowers a look ahead to future competition when the spring season rolls around.

“At this competition, several of the teams in our conference will be there,” Catloth said. “Teams like Alabama, Central Florida, SMU, Tennessee, Texas and Tulsa will all be at this race. We should have a good early season indication of where we are against the teams in the Conference USA.”

This event also marks the first competition for the Novice squad this season led by associate head coach Jennifer Myers.

“That’s the unknown because none of them have ever raced before in a collegiate competition,” said Catloth about the novice squad. “We’re mainly just getting them introduced to racing and rowing and what it is like to go to a regatta. We just want them to use what they’ve learned so far and get a taste for the sport of rowing and what it will entail.”

Kansas will return to action March 9-10, 2012, at the Oklahoma Invite in Oklahoma City, Okla.