March 13, 2003
OXFORD, Ohio. - Boilermaker divers Carrie McCambridge, Carrie Dougherty, Heather Bachman and Clayton Davis venture to Miami University on Friday for the NCAA Central Regional Diving Zones, and attempt to qualify for next weekend's NCAA Diving Championships.
Purdue diving coach Wenbo Chen led several divers to last season's zone meet, including Davis and Kara Hajek-Gustafson, who claimed the 1-meter title and earned the right to compete at the NCAAs. The first-year coach also took Molly MacFarlane and Eric Warrick to the postseason, marking the first time in Purdue history that the Boilermakers qualified multiple individuals to the Zone Meet.
"I feel confident in everyone's abilities, as they all have an excellent chance to move on to the championships," said Chen. "Carrie has a great shot to qualify for the National Championships on both boards and Clayton should do well off the 1-meter board."
McCambridge has made quite an impression in her first season of intercollegiate diving. At the Big Ten Championships in February, McCambridge finished sixth with a score of 387.40, establishing a new varsity record and a season-best in the platform diving competition. She also earned an eighth-place finish off the 3-meter (463.40) and placed 12th off the 1-meter (242.30).
The freshman arrived at Purdue with a solid resume. In addition to winning three state championships off the 1-meter for Olentangy (Ohio) High School, McCambridge was a five-time Junior Nationals participant. At the 2002 Junior Nationals, the native of Lewis Center, Ohio, placed third off the 3-meter board. McCambridge also scored gold-medal showings off both boards at last season's Junior World Trials Meet.
Bachman is making her second appearance at the NCAA Zones; she also qualified as a freshman during the 1999-2000 campaign. This season the two-time Academic All-Big Ten recipient scored a qualifying dive of 297.67 off the 3-meter versus arch-rival Notre Dame. Fellow senior Dougherty also qualified for the postseason while competing against the Fighting Irish, scoring a mark of 272.02 in 3-meter competition.
Davis heads to Oxford on a positive note after breaking the school's 1-meter varsity record at the Big Ten Championships. The sophomore finished seventh with a score of 270.25, after recording a morning mark of 281.05. His total score of 551.30 broke the previous mark held by Eric Van Kannel since 1989.
The 2003 NCAA Women's Swimming and Diving Championships are being held at the University of Auburn starting Thursday, March 20. The men's championship meet takes place at the University of Texas beginning Thursday, March 27.
Complete results of the NCAA Diving Zones can be accessed through Miami's official athletic web site at www.muredhawks.com.