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Women drawn to unusual sport


On the day Ohio State freshmen signed up for extracurricular activities like sororities, paintball and recreational badminton, Amanda Purcell heard a sales pitch. Two women on the university's varsity rowing team begged her to join.

Purcell, a 5-foot-9, 230-pound French horn player and music major who had never played a sport before, said no, but the women persisted. Finally, she decided to give it a try.

Suddenly, she had a new hobby and a new way to pay her college bills.

A junior now, 40 pounds lighter and physically fit, Purcell has been on scholarship for more than a year and is competing in Ohio State's top varsity boat at this weekend's NCAA women's rowing championships in Sacramento. She is even thinking of the Olympics.   more...



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