Arizona's Schnell, USC's Agunbiade highlight 2021 Pac-12 Women's Diving Championships
TUCSON, ARIZ. - After an abbreviated regular season unlike any other, Pac-12 divers entered the annual conference Diving Championships in unfamiliar territory — more than 1,000 miles away from their swimming teammates. The University of Arizona's Hillenbrand Aquatic Center hosted the 2021 Pac-12 Diving Championships, with the Conference's Swimming Championships at the University of Houston, making this year's competition one to remember.
2021 Pac-12 Women’s Diver of the Meet: Delaney Schnell, R-Jr., ARIZONA (Tucson, Ariz.)
Amidst a competitive field, two divers stood out above the rest. In the end, ARIZONA redshirt junior Delaney Schnell earned Pac-12 Women’s Diver of the Meet honors after placing first in the 1-meter springboard and platform events.
USC sophomore Nike Agunbiade finished as runner-up in the 1M and platform, but won the 3-meter springboard in convincing fashion for her first Pac-12 diving title. The Trojans as a team had at least two divers reach the championship finals in all three events.
1-Meter Springboard: Delaney Schnell, R-Jr., ARIZONA (Tucson, Ariz.)
Competing in her home facility, Schnell kicked things off on Wednesday with a dominating performance, winning the 1-meter springboard by nearly 30 points. The Tucson-native earned a score of 345.45 in the event in which she earned All-America honors in 2018, the same year she was named Pac-12 Women’s Freshman Diver of the Year.
USC’s Agunbiade finished second (313.90) while CALIFORNIA’s Briana Thai took third (312.05).
3-Meter Springboard: Nike Agunbiade, So., USC (Pacifica, Calif.)
Agunbiade earned her first Pac-12 title with a landslide win in the 3-meter springboard on Thursday, putting up a score of 374.65.
STANFORD’s Daria Lenz took second for her best finish in the event at the Conference championship. Her 335.55 was an NCAA Zone qualifier.
UTAH’S Lizzie DeCecco placed third with a 328.65, a mark which ranks No. 3 in school history. The Utes placed four divers in the top-12 of the event, while the Trojans had three in the top-7.
Platform: Delaney Schnell, R-Jr., ARIZONA (Tucson, Ariz.)
Two days after taking the 1M title, Schnell entered Friday’s platform final as the heavy favorite and delivered with a 383.35 prelims score to break the Conference record in the event. The record was previously set in 2015 by USC’s Haley Ishimatsu (368.75).
Schnell went on to post a 364.50 in the final for a commanding victory by nearly 80 points, with USC and STANFORD featuring two divers each in the top-6.
CALIFORNIA senior Briana Thai and STANFORD senior Mia Paulsen were recognized before Friday’s preliminary competition for their achievements during their collegiate careers.
The 2021 NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming & Diving Championships will be held from March 17-20 in Greensboro, N.C. Coverage of the event will be announced at a later date.