Briana is from Pittsburgh, PA and began rowing the summer before her freshman year at North Allegheny High School. She has two silver medals from the Stotesbury Cup Regatta, along with a bronze medal in the quadruple sculls at the USRowing Youth Invitationals. She placed in the top 15 internationally and top 10 nationally at the C.R.A.S.H.-B. World Indoor Rowing Championships. In 2006, Briana was chosen to be a member of the United States Junior National Team, competing in the quadruple sculls in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. She went on to row at the University of Wisconsin for four years and was elected team captain her senior year. During her college career, she acquired four Big Ten Medals and was part of the first ever Big Ten Championship team in Wisconsin history. She placed 2nd in the Varsity 4+ at the NCAA Championships, marking the highest nationally placing boat in the history of Wisconsin rowing. In 2010, she was a member of the Varsity 8+ that placed 10th at NCAAs, resulting in a 7th place overall team finish, which was the highest the team has ever finished at NCAAs. She was an assistant coach in 2011 to the women's freshmen team at Wisconsin and was the boatman for the Wisconsin program.