Gophers Welcome Three To Rookie Class of 2018-19
Jan. 26, 2018

Head coach Wendy Davis announced the signing of three student athletes to a National Letter of Intent with the Gopher Rowing program during the fall signing period.

Grace Ackley of Centerville, Minnesota, will join the Gophers next fall with previous experience rowing for the Minnesota Boat Club under head coach Miriam Baer, serving as the team captain during the 2017-18 season. The 6-foot tall Ackley has also been a three-sport prep athlete at Hill-Murray High School, competing in five seasons of lacrosse, five seasons of alpine skiing, and two of swimming. Her arrival at Minnesota carries on a family tradition as both her father, James Ackley, and uncle Jason Ackley, are graduates of the University. She plans to major in biology at Minnesota.

Margot Crawley of Crystal Lake, Illinois, arrives in Gold Country after spending time with both the Milwaukee Rowing Club and the Crystal Lake Rowing Club. While at Milwaukee, she competed in Minneapolis as part of the Twin Cities Sweeps this past July, claiming first place in both the 1v8 and 2v4+ races. The team also has competed at the Chicago Sprints this summer, claiming second place in the 1v8, and at the Head of the Charles in Boston, and the Head of the Hooch in Chattanooga this fall. The 5-foot-8-inch Crawley also competed in volleyball as an outside hitter and soccer as a middle defender during her prep career at Prairie Ridge High School. She plans to major in mass communication or marketing at Minnesota.

Saskia Dammersmith of Melbourne, Australia becomes the latest international addition to the Maroon & Gold. She attended Ruyton Girls School, where she competed for 10 years as a national level swimmer in pool and open water, having won 19 age medals at State level, including State Championships in the 200m Breast and 200m Back in 2012 and 100m Breast in 2013 and seven different Silver medals. In addition she competed in water polo for six seasons and basketball for 12 years. She also spent time with the MLC Aquatic swimming club. Outside of sports, she spends time volunteering including helping provide food to the homeless and has received words for Science and Drama. Dammersmith’s sister, Phoebe, rows for San Diego State University. She intends to major in neuroscience with a minor in psychology.

Minnesota returns to the water for an exhibition outing with San Diego State on Friday-Saturday, Feb. 2-3. 

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