June 27, 2008
BERKELEY - Former California rower Erin Cafaro was named to the U.S. Olympic Rowing Team on Friday as part of the U.S. women's eight (W8+). In addition, former Golden Bear Laurel Korholz was named a U.S. assistant coach and former Cal rower Julie Nichols was tabbed as an alternate for the U.S. women's single scull (W1x).
Cafaro was a key member of Cal's 2005 and 2006 NCAA championship teams, rowing on Cal's winning varsity eight in 2005 and earning first-team All-America honors in 2006 when the Bears' varsity eight took second place.
"Everyone at Cal is really proud of Erin and very happy for her," said 10th-year Cal head coach Dave O'Neill, who coached Cafaro from 2002 to 2006 in Berkeley. "She's always been a tough competitor and hard worker, and she's continued to improve every step along the way. The eight is the priority event for the U.S. women, and they are very much contenders for a medal."
Korholz, a three-time Olympian who joined the U.S. coaching staff in 2005, will work with the U.S. women's double sculls (W2x) in Beijing. She rowed at Cal from 1990 to 1993 and was a member of the Bears' team that took second place in the 1993 Pac-10 championships.
Nichols (Cal 1997-2000) was the Bears' Most Improved Rower in 1999. While she finished second in the U.S. Trials earlier this month, she more recently claimed a spot in the lightweight women's single at the 2008 World Championships for non-Olympic events July 17-20 in Brandenberg, Germany.
Earlier this month at the Olympic Qualification Regatta in Poland, former Bear Iva Obradovic qualified for the Beijing Olympics as part of Serbia's women's single scull.