Crew Names New Assistant Coaches

Sept. 15, 2000

SAN DIEGO - San Diego State head crew coach Scott Steckel has announced Helen Betancourt and Raj Shah as assistant women's crew coaches. Both are currently on the U.S Olympic national team and are competing in Sydney, Australia.

Shah is a four-time national team member and is currently working on her master's degree in physiology at SDSU after earning her undergrad degree in biology from Brown University in 1996. She is a two-time collegiate national champion, receiving all-Ivy League academic honors. She won the gold in the four and eight at the 2000 U.S. National Championship. Shah is from North Greenbush, N.Y.

"As the top U.S. coxswain, Raj will help with our rowing strategy," said Steckel. "Her experience at the Olympics should prove valuable in coaching our coxswains."

Bentancourt, a native of Philadelphia, is a five-time national team member and was a U.S. figure skating gold medalist. During her collegiate career at Brown she won a gold medal in the varsity eight at the 1996 NCAA Championships and a bronze in the 1998 NCAA Championships. She graduated from Brown with a degree in American studies. Betancourt also brings a wealth of international experience having won the gold in the four at the 1996 Nation's Cup (Under-23 World Championsips). She finished fifth in the four at the 2000 FISA Senior Non-Olympic World Championships and was a spare on the '99 national team.

"Helen will be a valuable assistant," said Steckel. "Her experience on the national team and as a member of a top caliber collegiate team make her an excellent role model."

The Aztecs are currently holding tryouts for the 2000-01 squad which opens its fall schedule Oct. 22, at the Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston.

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