Pac-12 announces women's diving postseason awards
WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - USC redshirt junior Haley Ishimatsu was named Pac-12 Women’s Diver of the Year, ARIZONA freshman Michal Bower was named Freshman/Newcomer of the Year and USC’s Hongping Li was named Pac-12 Women’s Diving Coach of the Year, the Conference office announced today. The awards were voted on by the Pac-12 women’s diving coaches.
Ishimatsu went two for three in the diving competitions at the 2014 Pac-12 Championships, winning the three-meter, then setting a meet record to defend her Pac-12 platform title from a year ago. The 2013 NCAA Platform title holder went on to become the first women’s diver to repeat as platform champion at NCAAs since 1992-93. The Seal Beach, Calif. native was named the Pac-12 women’s Diver of the Meet in addition to receiving February Women’s Diver of the Month honors. Only a junior, the All-American now owns three Pac-12 individual titles and two NCAA platform championships. Haley follows in the footsteps of her older sister Victoria, who was a four-time Pac-12 Diver of the Year from 2009-2012.
Bower, a freshman from Loveland, Colo., had a stellar first year of collegiate diving, capped by two second-place finishes at the Pac-12 Championships in the three-meter and the one-meter. In earlier dual meets against Stanford and California, she nabbed a pair of first-place finishes in the one-meter and three-meter, respectively. Throughout the months of January and February, Bower didn’t finish lower than second in the one or three meter dives in every competition she was entered.
Li has been named the Pac-12 Women’s Diving Coach of the Year for the sixth consecutive year and a record eleven times overall. Since joining the Trojans in 1999, Li has guided men’s and women’s divers to eight NCAA titles. Under his tutelage, Ishimatsu established a new NCAA record on the platform in 2013 then went on to repeat as the NCAA Platform Champion last weekend. Li also coached Haley’s older sister Victoria, an All-American and NCAA champion in the one-meter springboard. The older Ishimatsu, who currently serves as a volunteer assistant for the Trojans, owns seven Pac-12 individual diving championships—three-consecutive in the one-meter (2010-12) and four-consecutive (2009-12) in the three-meter.