COLUMBUS, Ohio - Katie Beletskaya, Meghan Birkbeck and Claire-Louise Bode signed National Letters of Intent and will join the Ohio State rowing team for their freshmen season in the fall of 2010, Andy Teitelbaum, head coach, announced.
Birkbeck hails from Absecon, N.J., where she rows for the Holy Spirit High School crew. Holy Spirit is the same high school alma mater of junior coxswain Kristin DiJosie. Birkbeck attended the U.S. junior team selection camp and raced at Club Nationals. She is also a swimmer, competing in the 100m breast.
"Meghan is exactly the type of athlete that does well at Ohio State," Teitelbaum said. "She's excited by the competitive nature of our program and possesses the natural attributes to be a great rower here. She's been a two-sport athlete throughout high school and we are looking forward to seeing how she develops when she trains as a rower year round."
Beletskaya, of Vineland, N.J., rows for Vineland High School. This past summer, she raced for the Atlantic Coast Rowing Club at the Independence Day Regatta in Philadelphia and Club Nationals in Oak Ridge, Tenn.
"Katie was tremendously impressive when we had her on campus this fall," Teitelbaum said. "Her interest in our program and desire to be a part of the Ohio State environment really left an impression upon the staff and our athletes. We're excited to have someone of her athleticism included in our incoming class."
Bode, a native of Johannesburg, South Africa, participated in the Junior World Championships for her country in which she successfully made the A final and came in 5th.
"Claire is already at a high level for a rower of her age," Teitelbaum said. "Her finish in the coxless pair event at the Junior World championships is indicative of the caliber of athlete we have traditionally recruited to OSU. As her strength and technique grow, we see her as continuing the long line of successful national team rowers who have improved while at Ohio State."
Bode recently finished final exams at her high school and plans to continue rowing for her club and coaching beginners.
The current Buckeyes open the season against Princeton and Brown March 27 in Princeton, N.J. The Buckeyes' only home regatta is set for April 18 against Michigan, Michigan State and USC.