Emma Ivory-Ganja

The Texas men’s and women’s diving teams earned a host of NCAA Championship qualifying scores at the NCAA Zone “D” Diving Meet.

The meet, held at the University of Iowa, was one of several across the country. Teams divided into specific “zones,” in which divers competed in their final chance to earn a bid to the upcoming national championship meets.

The top-eight divers in the women’s 1-meter event finals were guaranteed qualifying scores. Junior Meghan Houston and senior Emma Ivory-Ganja snagged top-six finishes, assuring their places atop the springboard at the NCAA Championship next week. 

In the 3-meter competition, only a top-10 finish was needed to qualify. Both Houston and Ivory-Ganja, along with sophomore Murphy Bromberg, who took first, earned NCAA berths in the event Monday. This feat will mark Bromberg’s second-consecutive championship appearance, as well as Houston’s first and Ivory-Ganja’s fourth.

On the men’s side, the event proved a success. In the 1-meter diving finals Monday night, Cory Bowersox, junior and two-time All-American in the 1-meter event, senior Will Chandler and sophomore Mark Anderson earned NCAA qualifying scores as they finished among the top four. 

Bowersox’s has earned NCAA qualification each of the three years he has been on the team. Additionally, Chandler is heading to the championship meet for the fourth consecutive year.

The men’s diving trio tacked on another impressive qualifying finish in Tuesday night’s 3-meter finals as each posted a one, two, three finish. Chandler took the top spot.

The men’s platform competition is scheduled for Wednesday, and the corresponding NCAA Championships will be in the same pool on March 26–28, and the women hit the water for the Championships March 19–21.

Head coach Carol Capitani says her team must never take a top-10 finish for granted. With a third consecutive ninth place finish, Texas showed a complete team effort from both its swimmers and divers. The Longhorns tallied up 144 total points in the three-day championship event but came up short against back-to-back champion Georgia (528 points) and runner-up Stanford (386).

Texas senior diver Maren Taylor capped off her final NCAA Championships with two runner-up finishes. Taylor tallied 399.30 total points including a meet-best 73.5 that led her to a second-place finish in the three-meter diving event.

“My hat’s off again to our divers,” Capitani said. “They are incredible. It’s great inspiration. It’s fun to be working together as a team.”

Longhorn junior diver and UCLA transfer, Emma Ivory-Ganja, had a roller coaster ride in the final. Ivory-Ganja began to climb the standings two rounds into the five total from fifth place. She jumped her way into third place with her 1.5-twist somersault before just one round remained. Ivory-Ganja saved her best for last, scoring 76.80 with a final dive that catapulted her into first place. USC diver Haley Ishimatsu eclipsed Ivory-Ganja’s total with her last dive of the event, but Ivory-Ganja still provided Texas with significant points in a second-place finish.

The Longhorns capped off the meet finishing fifth in the 400 free relay consolation final. The relay team was led by seniors Ellen Lobb, Alex Hooper and Samantha Tucker, as well as junior Gretchen Jacques.

“I’m proud of the leadership and how the upperclassmen are passing the torch down to our younger kids,” Capitani said. “Gretchen [Jacques] has definitely grown up.”

A day after being named the Big 12 Conference’s Women’s Diver of the Week for the second time this season, junior Emma Ivory-Ganja won the three-meter event in Thursday’s final round. 

Ivory-Ganja’s closing dive, an inward two-and-a-half somersault, was good enough to stave off teammate Maren Taylor with a total score of 362.55. Taylor took second with 351.80 points in her return to competition after battling injuries. Freshman Murphy Bromberg was fifth with 331.10 points.  

Ivory-Ganja came from behind to earn the victory after being led by Hawaii’s Lauren Hall through four of six rounds.  Bromberg, who competed in last summer’s FINA World Championships, will headline the 10-meter platform diving competition set for Saturday.  

The UT Diving Invitational resumes Friday with the one-meter competition preliminary round at 11 a.m. and the finals set for 5 p.m.

Texas swimmer, diver earn Big 12 Honors

Senior swimmer Samantha Tucker and junior diver Emma Ivory-Ganja earned conference player of the week honors Wednesday for their performances against Texas A&M and North Carolina last week.

Tucker was named Big 12 Swimmer of the Week after claiming the 200-yard freestyle against the Aggies with a time of 1:47:95, a time which was good enough for 10th-best in college swimming this season. In the Longhorns’ victory over North Carolina, Tucker was runner-up in both the 50-yard and 200-yard freestyle events. 

Ivory-Ganja, who is a transferred to UT from UCLA, notched Big 12 Diver of the Week honors by winning the three-meter diving event against Texas A&M. The junior also tallied individual runner-up finishes in both the one-meter and three-meter diving events against the Tar Heels. 

The awards were the first conference player of the week honors for both Tucker and Ivory-Ganja in their careers.  

Texas Baseball has No. 2 recruiting class

Baseball America announced Tuesday the Texas baseball Class of 2013 was the second best in the nation, trailing only the Florida Gators. The rankings rate classes based on the players who are attending campus in the fall. 

Just like the Gators and South Carolina, Texas tallied five recruits ranked in the Baseball America 500: right-handed pitcher Lukas Schiraldi (No. 162), infielder Andy McGuire (No. 198), catcher Tres Barrera (No. 200), infielder Bret Boswell (No. 221) and right-handed pitcher Blake Goins (No. 256).

The Longhorns have 13 total recruits joining the team this season, five of which were drafted in the most recent MLB Draft but deferred to play
college baseball. 

This is the 12th time in the last 14 years that Texas brought in a Top-12 ranked class.