July 29, 2013
TUCSON, Ariz. - In a crowded field that featured 107 divers from across the southwest, senior diver Megan Harper shined as she placed top five in both the 1- and 3-meter springboards at the 2013 USA Diving National Preliminary Zone D Championships that took place in Tucson, Ariz. last week.
You could say that in a way the All-Mountain West diver had a sort of "home field advantage," as she graduated from Xavier College Preparatory in Phoenix, Ariz., a hop, skip and a jump away from Tucson.
Harper got into the final round after posting a score of 226.40 in the preliminary round of the 1-meter competition. Former All-American diver Ashlee Erickson also joined her in finals as she placed third with a tally of 233.55.
During the final round, Erickson dropped down and finished 10th with a score of 203.70 while Harper climbed the ranks and rose to the top with a final tally of 254.25. Her score was 1.55 points higher than that of second place finisher Stephanie Phipps of Stanford.
"Megan dove great today," said Coach Abel Sanchez. "She has been working hard this entire summer and it shows. She deserved to do well in this competition and that is exactly what happened."
Harper also performed well off the 3-meter board placing eighth in the prelim round, with a total of 237.90 and once again climbing the ranks to finish fifth with a final round total of 233.50.
The senior is a decorated veteran who will provide leadership for the diving squad this upcoming season, but for now she must focus on the USA Diving AT&T Senior National Championships taking place in Iowa City, Iowa August 13-18.