Divers shine on global stage, Bradshaw named to Team USA coaching staff
In different corners of the world, the members of the Arizona State diving team showcased their elite talent by qualifying for the top international diving competitions this weekend.
Senior Harrison Jones, who had qualified for the 2013 FINA World Championships on the 1-meter springboard on Friday, also qualified to compete on the platform and possibly the 3-meter. Head coach Mark Bradshaw was also named a coach for Team USA at the World Championship games.
“It’s exciting for me as a coach, because I competed in three World Championships [as a competitive diver],” said head coach Mark Bradshaw. “Other than the Olympic games, this is the highest level of competition you can reach, especially for Harry in particular, who has never made it to [World Championships] before.
Jones was the only diver in the USA Diving Trials, in Tallahassee, Fla., to dive in all three disciplines: 1-meter, 3-meter and platform. Jones finished third in the 3-meter could potentially fill a vacant spot for the United States in the event because only Olympic bronze medalist Kristian Ipsen met the total point requirement to qualify at the time of the trials. While Jones’ three-round score on the 3-meter was not high enough, his final round score of 508.80 was the top score of the day.
“Harry just nailed every dive,” said Bradshaw. “It was a dive I had seen earlier in the season when he was on a roll. He actually beat Ipsen again and scored over 500 points, which is a rarity and doesn’t happen often.“
Bradshaw was selected to the coaching staff for Team USA for the World Championships in Barcelona, Spain, Bradshaw’s first Team USA coaching appointment after competing for the organization in the late 80's including the 1988 Seoul Korea Olympics.
From Tallahassee to Puerto Rico, three-time Pac-12 3-meter Champion Constantin Blaha, representing Austria, qualified for the World University Games with his Bronze Medal finish in his specialty event at the Puerto Rico Grand Prix. Jones also qualified for the World University Games with his performance at the World Championship Trials.
“Coco was a post-eligibility guy who just graduated,” said Bradshaw. “He continued to train for the goal in mind and it was really rewarding to see him accomplish it. This was really his last opportunity.”
“It was really such a special week with Coco qualifying and Harry competing the way he did. It was really just a tremendous week for myself and my athletes.”
Next week, current Sun Devil divers Hailey Casper, this season’s NCAA 3-meter runner-up, and Olympic finalist Riley McCormick will compete in Canadian Nationals for an opportunity to qualify for the World Championships as well. Casper will compete in the 3-meter and 3-meter Syncro, while McCormick, who is still nursing a thumb injury, will only compete in the 3-meter springboard.