Maren Taylor

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 will compete in its final meet of the semester Thursday: the UT Diving Invitational — the first meet of the qualifying season. The women’s diving squad runs deep in talent and experience with a few members having competed in the world championships in Barcelona this past summer. 

Redshirt senior Maren Taylor won her first national title on the 1-meter board and finished 11th in the 3-meter final at this summer’s World Championships — her first international meet. This success follows a productive junior season in which she won the 3-meter event at the NCAA Zone D Championships.  

“It has started a new part of my career because it has made me have new, bigger goals and it allows me to look beyond just this year,” Taylor said. “I definitely want to build on this past summer.”

Despite her success on the international stage, Taylor prefers to focus on the short term and her impending return to competition, as a plethora of injuries has kept her out of competition
this season.  

“The [2016] Olympics remains one of my biggest goals, but I am taking it one day at a time and not looking too far ahead,” Taylor said.    

Fellow divers, junior Emma Ivory-Ganja and freshman Murphy Bromberg have made some waves of their own with combined first place finishes on the 3-meter event four out of their five meets this fall. Ivory-Ganja is a transfer this year from UCLA, despite being initially recruited out of the Woodlands High School by Texas head coach Matt Scoggin. Bromberg won the 10-meter platform event at this summer’s national championships after placing seventh at the world championships in the platform synchronized event.   

“We have a really strong team this year, probably one of the strongest teams in the country with the combination of everybody’s individual talents on the different boards,” Taylor said.  

The UT Diving Invitational attracts notable big names Miami (Fla.), Arizona State, Hawaii and UC-Berkeley — the current team of 2012 Olympic champion Missy Franklin.

Scoggin is quite pleased with his team’s performance this fall season and entertains high hopes for the week’s competition.

“I expect that they physically are feeling a little bit better because of the lighter weights they are on this week,” Scoggin said. “I expect them to have multiple signs of positive progress. They have worked very hard this fall and I think in each of the events they will see their progress happening.”

After a mishap at the 2011 NCAA Championships dislocated her right elbow, diver Maren Taylor opted to redshirt what would have been her third year, the 2011-12 season, to heal. Now, she has recovered, is back on the board and headed to Spain to compete in the FINA World Championships.

Taylor earned a spot in the individual three-meter diving event at the Championships beginning July 19 in Barcelona, Spain. She will be the only American woman to compete in the event and is the first Texas diver to represent the U.S. in international competition since Laura Wilkinson in 2008. Texas diving coach Matt Scoggin will join her as an assistant coach on the team.

To qualify, divers competed in the 2013 USA Diving World Trials and had to earn a minimum of 903 points with a combined degree of difficulty of 14.8 in the finals. Taylor finished with a 905.50 points and a 14.8 difficulty level on her five dives.

Scoggin said the meet was successful and proved what Taylor could do especially after her disappointing NCAA trip.

“What Maren did today was exactly what we thought she’d be able to do in the three-meter event at the NCAA Championships,” Scoggin said. “Her three-meter finish at NCAAs was disappointing, but she was able to shake it off. That’s a big key to her success. She moved on, prepared for this meet and knew she could do this today."

During the season, Taylor brought her Big 12 title total to three and was selected as the Big 12 Diver of the Year. She earned All-America honors in the one-meter and platform events this year at the 2013 NCAA Championships, giving her All-American awards for each year she has competed.

The Longhorns competed in the NCAA Zone “D” Diving Meet March 11-13 in Houston, as redshirt junior Maren Taylor and senior Shelby Cullinan qualified for the national competition.

Both divers won their spots on the opening day, taking a one-two finish in the 3m diving event. Taylor won the event with 709.60, and Cullinan finished behind her at 662.90. Cullinan narrowly secured the second spot, beating Cassie Weil of LSU by two tenths of a point. Senior Diana Wilcox finished tenth.

This is Taylor’s third NCAA appearance and Cullinan’s fourth.

Cullinan also won the platform diving event on the last day of competition, even though she had already secured a bid. Taylor came in fourth, followed by Wilcox in sixth.

Freshman Meghan Houston came close to her first NCAA trip, finishing fourth in the one-meter diving event. Houston had the chance because divers could only qualify once, but they still have to place in the top two for an event. Zone “D” only took seven divers and she would’ve been number eight.

The NCAA Championships will take place in Indianapolis beginning March 21, with Texas being represented by 10 individual swimmers, five relay teams and the two divers.

The Longhorns return to Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center on Wednesday as host of the 2013 Big 12 Championships, looking to bring home their 11th Big 12 team title.

Texas (4-3) will be swimming against the four Big 12 schools with women’s swimming teams: Iowa State (4-5), Kansas (6-4), TCU (4-3) and West Virginia (3-4).

Kansas’ 6-4 season record is the only one higher than Texas’ record of 4-3, which is tied with TCU. 

The Longhorns have won 10 of the 16 championships since the conference formed. Texas won its last title in 2011, the last time the championships were held in Austin, and finished second in 2012, behind only Texas A&M.

In its last performance, Texas dominated against SMU, winning 228-66, but had trouble breaking away from Arizona, solidifying a win in the last event pulling ahead to 154-146.

Redshirt junior Maren Taylor will anchor the diving squad, coming off victories on both the one-meter and three-meter boards in her last competition. Taylor was awarded Big 12 Diver of the Week for her performance. Close behind her is senior Shelby Cullinan, who finished second to Taylor on both boards at the same meet.

Senior swimmer Laura Sogar is expected to finish her senior season strong after winning the 200-yard breaststroke in her last meet. Sogar is the UT record holder for that stroke. Sophomore Gretchen Jaques has also made an impact with the team this year, pulling in the top 25 for three strokes and winning the 100-yard breaststroke and 100-yard butterfly, where she came half a second shy of the NCAA automatic-qualifying mark.

The four-day event begins with preliminary rounds Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. and will continue with finals for the 200-medley relay and the 800-freestyle relay at 6 p.m.

Published on February 27, 2013 as "Longhorns host Big 12, look to capture title". 

Redshirt junior diver Maren Taylor showed why she is a two-time All-American this weekend at the Phill Hansel Invitational, registering top-five finishes in all three diving events. Taylor won the three-meter event in dominating fashion on Thursday, winning by 45 points, followed by a second-place finish in the one-meter event and a fifth-place finish in platform diving.

On her fourth dive in the three-meter event, Taylor registered a meet-best 70.50, a reverse two-and-a-half somersault in the pike position.

Other notable dives include freshman Meghan Houston’s one-meter dive, where she placed seventh, senior Shelby Cullinan’s fifth-place three-meter dive and senior Diana Wilcox’s 11th-place three-meter dive. Houston also recorded a 22nd place finish in the platform dive and the three-meter dive.

Freshman Kristina Hoffmann registered a 14th-place finish in the platform.

The Texas swimmers resume fall competition on Thursday, Nov. 29, when the USA Swimming Winter National Championships come to Austin at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center.

Redshirt junior Maren Taylor and the rest of the Longhorn divers will travel to the University of Houston to compete in the Phill Hansel Cougar Classic Invitational Thursday through Saturday. They will be taking part in all three diving events (1M, 3M and platform).

“It will be great for the team to get used to the University of Houston pool where we’ll have the NCAA Zone Diving Meet in March,” UT diving coach Matt Scoggin said. “Being able to dive at the facility of the NCAA Zone meet is one of the main reasons we’re going there ... A number of the schools competing in that Zone meet will be in Houston this weekend, so this will be a really good competition.”

Last week after the trip to California, Taylor earned her third career Big 12 Women’s Diver of the Week. She won five of her six events in the meets against Indiana, Michigan, Cal and Stanford.

As for other divers, senior Diana Wilcox’s first-place finish in the 3M at Stanford two weekends ago proved crucial to the Longhorns’ three-point victory. Freshman Meghan Houston and redshirt senior Shelby Cullinan have also had a successful year, making them divers to watch.

Seniors Laura Sogar, Kelsey Amundsen, Maren Taylor and sophomore Kaitlin Pawlowicz captured two wins apiece to help the Longhorns defeat both Indiana and Michigan in the home opener Friday at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center.

Texas ousted Indiana 172-128 while crushing the Wolverines 217-83.

“It means a lot,” head coach Carol Capitani said of capturing the first wins of the season and her head coaching career. “I wanted to start off on the right foot. We showed some character and toughness tonight. But we just need to keep working.”

Sogar, the school record holder in the 100 and 200 breaststroke, swam away from the Hoosiers and Wolverines in both those events notching times good enough for an NCAA “B” cut.

“She is very consistent and dependable,” Capitani said of Sogar. “She is one of the best girls in the country, and I am lucky to have her.”

Taylor, a two-time All-American, swept the diving events.

The Longhorns will travel to Cal-Berkley on Friday to take on the defending champs before going up against Stanford on Saturday.

Junior Maren Taylor teamed up with future Longhorn Meghan Houston in the women’s 3-meter synchronized springboard final round at the US Olympic Diving Team trials Thursday evening. With a total score of 738.72 points, the duo finished 8th in the event.

Taylor and Houston scored 165 points in the final round of the event, a strong showing but not enough to move up in the rankings. Their final score was four points shy of sixth place.

Taylor is recovering from a dislocated elbow she sustained last year at the 2011 NCAA National Championship meet. The Olympic trials marked Taylor’s first competition since the injury.

Only the top pair in the event qualify for a spot on the Olympic team. Kelci Bryant from Minnesota and Abby Johnston from Duke will represent the US in the synchronized 3-meter event.

Former Longhorns Drew Livingston and Troy Dumais will compete in the final round of the men’s synchronized 3-meter springboard event Friday night at 8pm. Dumais will also compete in the final round of the individual 3-meter springboard event on Sunday.

 

Day five is underway at the 2012 Olympic Team Trials for diving in Federal Way, Wash. Several past, present, and future Longhorns have been competing this week for a spot on the Olympic roster.

Tonight, junior Maren Taylor will be competing alongside future Longhorn Meghan Houston in the final round of the 3-meter synchronized springboard event. Taylor and Houston enter the finals seated eighth overall; only one pair will travel to London for this event.

Taylor competed in the preliminary round of the 3-meter individual springboard event on Tuesday. After a poor first dive, Taylor registered four solid outings but was unable to work her way into the semifinal round.

“Maren started with a front 3 1/2 and had a nightmare hurdle, but she hit all of her next four dives great,” Texas diving coach Matt Scoggin said. “The good news is that her back is healthy and she still has her synchro final on Thursday.”

Brothers, and former Longhorns, Troy and Justin Dumais will dive in the finals for the 3-meter individual springboard event on Sunday. They will be joined by their brother, Stanford alum Dwight Dumais.

Troy Dumais is a three-time Olympian with the US diving team.

Former Longhorn Drew Livingston, who graduated this past May, also competed in the 3-meter individual springboard but was unable to advance out of the semifinal round after falling six spots to 17th overall.

Livingston and Troy Dumais will be competing in the final round of the 3-meter synchronized springboard event on Friday. Dumais and his partner sit in first place, followed closely by Livingston in second. Justin and Dwight Dumais will also compete in the finals in fourth place.

Sunday is the final day of the diving trials. The USA Olympic Swimming Trials will begin on June 25th in Omaha, Neb.

Outside the United States, former Longhorn Susana Escobar was named to the Mexican Olympic Team. This will be her second Olympics with the swim team. Escobar will compete in the 800 freestyle event in London and logged the top time in Mexico this year with a time of 8:42.45, one of only two women to break the nine minute mark.