Sailing World's 2007-2008 Preseason Prognosications

Our coaches panel-- Michael Callahan (Georgetown), Ken Legler (Tufts), and Mike Segerblom (USC)-- scouts incoming freshmen and predicts the top teams throughout the ICSA.

MIDDLE ATLANTIC INTERCOLLEGIATE SAILING ASSOCIATIONMAISA could be the deepest Conference in the country this year with at least eight teams who can win a National Championship. The top program in MAISA for 2007-2008 will almost surely be the St. Mary's College Seahawks. The defending team racing and Women's National Champions, despite losing some great talent, will actually be deeper and better this year. St. Mary's returns six All-American skippers in John Loe, Jesse Kirkland, Justin Law, Adrienne Patterson and Sara Morgan Watters. Add to that list incoming freshmen Michael Menninger and Ben Whitman as well as upperclassmen Alex Bishop, Alex Steele and Jeremy Wilmot and you have a team that will be favored to win every ICSA regatta in which they compete.Close on the heels of St. Mary's will be the resurgent team from the Naval Academy. Led by coach John Vandemoer the midshipmen impressed everyone last year with a strong second half performance. Navy returns a strong cast including Bryan Rigby, Martin Sterling and Andrew Vann as well as women's skipper Charlotte Hill and crew Kristin Sproat. This talented squad will add Laser ace Royce Weber to the coed team and Megan Magill to the women's team. Look for Navy to continue to improve throughout the year. Hobart/William Smith was hurt the most by graduation losing College Sailor of the Year Trevor Moore and B division skipper Brian Clancy but Coach Scott Ikle is excited about the group he was coming back and Hobart will almost certainly be a top 5 team. Skippers Jay Mills, Austin Kana, John Sampson and Rob Crane will lead the coed team with crews Morgan Commette, Kaitlyn Van Nostrand, and Sarah Borup The women's team will add skippers Kelly Crane, Lauren Lark and Caroline Patten and the coed team adds Sam Padnos and Ike Babbitt.Georgetown University should give the top teams some good competition this year as well. All-Americans Chris Behm and Carly Chamberlain lead a coed squad that will be looking for a new B division boat with the graduation of JB Turney and Caroline LaMotte. Returning skippers Zack Kavanaugh, Nik Holtan and Marco Teixidor will have a shot in B division but look for a strong freshman class headlined by Evan Aras and Charlie Buckingham to do a lot of sailing in big events. The women's team will once again be led by Blaire Herron and Emily Babbitt.Old Dominion University lost their assistant coach Samantha Ficksman to Hampton University but will be hiring two new full time assistants which is a great sign of support from the university. Head coach Mitch Brindley will be without Kyle Rogachenko (Olympic campaign) this fall but will have Bobby Noonan, Mike Collins and Mike Brown on the coed team and Katrina Williams leading the women. Top crews Jaci Finney, Alissa Ayres, and Elyssa Albert will be relied on to help a strong freshman class that boasts Steph Roble from Wisconsin, Morgan Wilson from Annapolis, and Ryan Ramming from Southern California.Kings Point returns some great sailors from a semester at sea and will once again be a top ranked team. Chris Alexander and Jimmy Givens will lead the coed team with help from juniors Charles Bonner and Steven Holm. Newcomers Patrick Reilly and Nick Aswad will lead the freshmen. Skipper Allison Davis and crew Laura Beck will lead the women's team. Three MAISA teams will be considered dark horse candidates for winning a National Championship but success from these teams should hardly be a surprise.Coach Geoff Becker's Washington College team has been one of the top teams in MAISA the last three years and this season should be a breakthrough year. Skippers Alex Hood, Conner Blouin , and Parker Mitchell will make the Shoremen a tough team to beat all year long.New York Maritime returns a very strong group with skippers Todd Hawkins and Dan Hesse. This team qualified for Nationals in 2006 and after a disappointing spring season the Privateers will look to regain their old form. The incoming freshman class includes radial standouts Randy Hartranft (Bayville, NJ) and Ted Green (Wickford, RI) as well as Morning Light sailor Steven Manson (Baltimore, MD). Coach Blaine Pedlow is very excited to work with this young and talented team.U/Pennsylvania will once again have a very strong coed team. Led by Pat Curran and Garth Fasano the Penn team will almost certainly be in the top 20 all year and has a chance to break into the top 5. Penn narrowly missed a chance to compete at Nationals last spring but with the new format they should be a lock to make it to the Nationals this season. Other teams that should do well in MAISA and ICSA event are Christopher Newport, Fordham, Cornell, Columbia, and Hampton.MIDWEST COLLEGIATE SAILING ASSOCIATIONRecruiting sailing talent in the MSCA is done on campus during matriculation. Sailing clubs put up displays to attract new sailors and find experienced sailors to join their respective teamsThe big three in the MCSA, Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota, have a rising power in Notre Dame to contend with. Notre Dame skippers, John Dailey and Tim Roy took second in both divisions of the MCSA dinghy champs last spring to qualify for nationals. They should be even stronger this year.Minnesota lost little to graduation with Jessica Haverstock, Dave Elsmo and Nick Howland all returning. Wisconsin graduated Anna Bargren and Scott Eisenhardt. Rob Pickens and Patti Schmidt both return and were among the best sailors in the conference last year. They have upcoming sailors Joanna Clark and Patrick Richards and two former X boat champions coming in, Jack Murphy and Leif Evensen.Michigan graduated Christina Falcone and Chris Granger but retain Scott Pfeiffer, Curt Rozelle and Maria Falcone.Northwestern graduated Brandon Keao but Jimmy Costakis and Tod Reynolds return.Ohio Univ will start Jordan Gourash and Ryanne Gallagher and welcome freshman Meredith Gourash.Miami/OH has a young Ryan Zupon returning while Michigan State graduated their top skipper, Rob Linden.NEW ENGLAND INTERCOLLEGIATE SAILING ASSOCIATIONThe Boston College Eagles will once again likely win more major fleet racing regattas than any other team. By spring they should have enough experience to win team racing intersectionals as well. Their freshmen class alone would be nationally ranked with 420 and high school champions Tyler Sinks and Taylor Canfield as well as Ida Lewis champ Emily Maxwell, World Youth champ crew Brianna Provencha and high school standout Halsey Richartz. They lose All-American crews Aly Whitehead to graduation and Julie Howe (for one semester abroad) and they lose some excellent skippers but not their best which return. All-Americans Reed Johnson, Adam Roberts and Brian Kamilar are back along with Parker Dwyer, Alden Reid and crews Allie Nagle, Lauren Gillooly, and Andrew Schneider. Their best women's skippers, Leigh Kempton and Martha Pitt will be away in the fall but will be a force in the spring.Yale will be tough once again despite losing Phil Stemler and Adam Barry as coed skippers and Emily Hill and Kendra Emhiser from the Women's team. Thomas Barrows made All-American in his freshmen year skippering B while Zach Brown repeated as All-American in A. John Kempton, a highly touted recruit last year, struggled early but came on late in the year and should be a factor for the Bulldogs in 07-08. Meanwhile, Yale adds Molly Lucas to a new era women's team with Sarah Lihan and Jane Macky as skippers. Adrienne Levin, Grace Becton and Marla Menninger all return as veteran crews but Hannah Oakland graduated.Brown might be the most improved team and they were pretty good again last year. Charlie Enright returns from the Morning Light project and only Isaac Stoner graduates from among many fine skippers who benefited from the spot Enright opened. They include Hugh Cullman, Andrew Perry and Matt Amarante with veteran crews Maria Mahler-Haug, Meris Tombari and Malay Khamsyvaravong. Brown's freshmAn class will triple the possibilities for their women's team. Four women skippers will add to the starting skipper duo of Sarah Braun and Charlotte Lipschitz. Laser star Fred Strammer and another Morning Light sailor, Mark Towill, also head for Providence to join the Brown Bears as freshmen.The Harvard Crimson suffers huge losses in Clay Johnson and some awesome crews but their other All-American skipper, Kyle Kovacs, was unbeatable on the Charles. B division will be open for the taking by Drew Robb, Megan Watson or Jon Garrity. Then again, perhaps one of the freshmen, Bemis champ Alan Palmer or Radial Youth champ Ted Himler will land a veteran crew and get experience at the top.MIT will have the same small but talented team as last year. Jack Field will lead the Engineers with fellow skippers Jake Muhlman, Brooks Reed and Josh Leighton. Their only problem is finding crews with the time to train and travel with the team.The Jumbos of Tufts graduated Zander Kirkland and Anna Martin and several very good women's team members. Returning sailors include Michael Easton, Baker Potts and Kaity Storck along with four veteran crews, Katie Greenlee, Meredith Ginley, Lyndsey Gibbons-Neff and Chryssa Rask. One of those crews, likely Chryssa Rask, may vie to skipper women's regattas. Top freshmen include 420 crew Margaret Rew, Radial skipper Meghan Pesch and Laser skipper Jamie Altreuter.Dartmouth Big Green graduates two skippers that nearly won the dinghies, EriK Storck and Andrew Loe. Filling those big shoes will be tough but Ben Sampson and Becca Dellenbaugh will try to do so for this small but traditionally very strong team. To keep that tradition alive, Dartmouth is in the process of hiring a replacement for their head coach, Brian Stanford, who is leaving for new adventures.Roger Williams has a new coach after their best year ever. Amanda Callahan, a champion team race crew will lead the Hawks without All-American Dave Hyers (2007 graduate) nor Cy Thompson (49er campaign). Returnees do include Andy Goetting, Matt Duggan and Sarah Meese. Meese anchored a women's team which, like the coed team, enjoyed their best season ever last year. Tucker Blagden from Marblehead, who won several local high school regattas, will be a freshman.Boston University should not be overlooked in this stacked NEISA conference. Ben Spiller returns for one more year along with brothers Bobby and Billy Martin and dedicated and talented crew Kerry Sullivan. Young women skippers Janel Zarkowsky and Anna Miniutti made nationals last year. The Rhode Island Rams graduated several top sailors most notably Matt Kasten. Brian Thompson will lead many younger sailors who will be stepping up. Last year's women's team surprised many at the New Englands and will only get better with skippers Jen Curtain and Kim Myer.The Camels of Connecticut College will be an improved team, particularly in the spring. Dave Meleney is back along with Nat Taylor and Kit Will (w/Morning Light last year). Charlie Modica will sail 470s in the Fall (with CC grad Forbes Barber) but return in the spring. Likewise for Matt Sterratt in Lasers. The young Camel women's team also returns intact to improve on last year's building season. Most of CC's recruits are women, both skippers and crews.Coast Guard loses some top skippers to graduation including Rob Gorman and Chris Greenough. Noel Shriner will lead the Bears in his senior year.Like Roger Williams, Salve Regina just enjoyed their best year ever in college sailing. Only Jamie Randall/Kerry Armendinger graduated. Michael Komar and Tory Pelligrini return to skipper. Freshmen include Rome Kirby and William Felder. Kirby almost put off college to try out for the Volvo Ocean Race in his dad's footsteps.Last year's freshman pair Clinton Hayes/Coco Solsvig had a great year for Vermont as did sophomores Tyler Beader/Chris Bletzer and junior Matt Clark. As such, the Catamounts have been getting better every year and will again this year despite the loss of Clark's crew Laura Evangelista. Recruits are Coleman Bowen and Erika Heineken.Bowdoin had its ups and downs last year with Mark Dineen leading the way. Their B skipper, Simon Bolgren graduated. Northeastern began last year's New Englands on fire with Alex Sherman-Ash skippering A but the competition overcame the Huskies in the end. This young team should improve. Maine Maritime, Mass Maritime, Bates and New Hampshire should round out NEISA's top twenty.NORTHWEST INTERCOLLEGIATE SAILING ASSOCIATIONWashington State - NW crew of the year Charissa Benson returns. She will be crewing for the team captain Scott Wilson in their final year of sailing. Nick Farley and Angela Congdon will also lead the sailing team with the help of incoming freshmen Ruel Merrill and Brandon ClosePACIFIC COAST COLLEGIATE SAILING CONFERENCE The Pacific Coast will see a "new day" as nationally ranked Stanford, UC Irvine and USC all had the graduation of a lot of key talent. However there is a lot of remaining talent and a huge amount of incoming freshman ability that should make for a more even playing field with unlikely dominance by any one team. Hawaii should make a move back toward the top with some strong new incoming freshmen, Stanford will remain near the top, UC Irvine will likely weaken, USC is a bit unknown depending on the commitment of some available talent at the school, Cal Maritime may see a nice surge in strength, UC Santa Barbara, UC Berkeley and UC San Diego are not reported but likely will remain largely "status quo" with the past year.Stanford - Head Coach Jay Kehoe returns for his 7th year with new assistant coach Erik Storck (4-time All-American, Runner-up for College Sailor of the Year, Dartmouth '07). Big losses in the graduation of seniors Emery Wager, Brian Haines, Caroline Young, Jo Madsen and Becca Levin but strong gains with incoming freshmen Cole Hatton (SoCal), Graham Todd (NJ) and Ben Pedrick (RI) on the coed side and Alex Dunlap (SoCal) and Hannah Burroughs (RI) on the women's side. Key returners include senior skippers Edward Conrad, Evan Brown and Craig Page, junior crew Kelly McKenna and skipper Taylor Grimes, sophomores skipper Peter Stemler and crew/skipper Leigh Hammel.UC Irvine - Big loss of All-Americans Frank Tybor and Whitney Loufek. However, a large pool of incoming freshmen and transfers include: Rex Cameron, Point Loma HS Sailing Team graduate, Samantha Ellis, Rancho Bernardo HS; Morgan Walker, Francis Parker HS Sailing Team graduate; Blair Johnston, Nordhoff HS; Juliana Mancini, Monte Vista Christian HS; Dan Ryan, Carlmont HS. Notable returning skippers include Will Pochereva (Fall only) and Danielle Richards (Spring only) and Ashley Simpson (Spring only).USC - Major turnover here with the graduation of All Americans Mikee Anderson, Greg Helias, Melanie Roberts, Vanessa DeCollibus and key players Clark Fonda and Eva Seligman. However, there is plenty of talent still around with Chris Orlando, Philip de Gannes, Chris Vetter, Christy Tatchell, Matt Hogan, and a host of incoming freshmen and others at the school.Hawaii - Notable incoming freshmen include Sam Kahn, William Peterson, P.J. Wenner and Hannah Tuson-Tunner. Notable returning seniors Mark Spector, Andrew Meade, Mike Scott (Spring only) and junior Ryan Wild and women's senior Becky Mabardy (Spring only), crews Pam Magasinn and Jackie McLaughlin.Cal Maritime - Key returning starters: Paige Johnston '09, Alli Jolls '09, Charles Davis '10, Joseph Schlosser '10. Incoming freshmen are Brian Malouf, Harry Sprague, Erik Glaser, Bryan Buffaloe, Garrett Laudenbach and Chase Young. The Cal Maritime Dinghy Team should continue its rise within PCCSC with added depth for the 2007/08 year. The incoming freshman class is probably the most talented class in recent history for CMA Sailing. The CMA Offshore Team continues to grow and do well. They look to defend their 3rd Shields Trophy at Navy in September with senior Nathan Prather trimming and junior Paige Johnston moving from the bow to the helm.UCLA - Team captain Matt Sirignano graduated as well as top crew Steph Adams. Women's B skipper and two year team captain Lyzz Schwegler has one quarter remaining in school, so she will remain with the team for the fall only. Coed A skipper Sam Wheeler ('08) and Women's A skipper Kelly Kephart ('09) are both returning, and will be the two captains for this year. Returning sophomore Mark Anders ('10) to step up over the course of the year and standout rookie crew Joana Que ('09) is also returning. Big things are expected from incoming freshman Carmen Bozina ('11), and they are hoping to get Nina Viggi ('10), who has been at UCLA for a year now, to get her act together and join the team.SOUTH ATLANTIC INTERCOLLEGIATE SAILING ASSOCIATIONThe College of Charleston surprised everyone last season by winning the coed Dinghy Nationals for the second year in a row. However the graduation of Russ O'Reilly and Brendan Healy leaves coach Ward Cromwell without his top coed skippers. NewcomersSteve Barbano, Cole Alsopp and John White (Bermuda) will challenge returning sailors Manton Paine, Creighton Armstrong and Alan Campbell for starting spots on the coed team. Top crews Megan Riddle and Britanny Haas are returning so whoever skippers in A and B will have great crews. The College of Charleston Women will once again be a top 5 team in the country and a favorite to win it all in the spring of '08. The Cougars boast the deepest women's team in the country with skippers Andrea Savage, Shannon Heausler, Allie Blecher and Katherine Metscher. The University of South Florida has a new coed coach. Gonzalo Crivello takes over from David Fallon and will be coaching a team that has newcomers Zack Marks, Andrew Jones and Matt Gardiner. All-American crew Tim King (junior) will try the switch to driving this year. Rachael Silverstein will join the women's team coached by Allison Jolly. Eckerd remains a young team with only one senior and a host of juniors and sophomores. The coed team will be led by a trio of junior drivers in Andrew Keane, Alex Jacobs and Arthur Blodgett, with their returning crews of Nicole Butchart, Danielle Oddo, and Brianna Wall. On the women's team, Eckerd will be looking to answer some questions early, as the only definite answers right now at driver is sophomore Cara Valvolotis and sophomore Meghan Mahoney as a crew. Incoming freshmen for coach Jim Terkelson's squad include Sheehan Commette, Danielle Fleet, Lara Dallman-Weiss and James Clappier. Other teams to watch in SAISA include, the University of Miami and Vanderbilt.SOUTHEAST INTERCOLLEGIATE SAILING ASSOCIATIONA few top recruits will improve the competition levels in the SEISA conference. The South Alabama veteran sailors Paul Kleinschrodt/Ashley Hall and Dennis Furey/Ashleigh Turner will be joined by local high school standout Alex Boudreaux. Adrian Roe and Kate Brobson round out the starting line-up for USA.Texas A&M at Galveston was devasted by graduation losing stars Hugh Haggarty, Scott Stanton, Amber Tull and Christine Nguyen. They will likely be surpassed by another Texas A&M, TAMU Corpus Christi. Former Connecticut College sailor turned coach Duffy Markham Danish reports that local sailor Keith Bass will join Nicholas Huffeldt/Sarah Pendleton, Ryan Edwards and others on their squad. She also advises Northern US teams to consider the warm and windy waters of Corpus as a spring break destination.Don't be surprised to see Oklahoma State doing well. Skippers Michael and Stephan Gent and Matt Dailey, along with crews Kelsey Neel, Sarah Kunkler and Lauren Weber will be training with upgraded facilities and boats this year.No word from Tulane at press time but this once powerhouse will no doubt be racing at all the major SEISA events.