2024 NCAA Zone E Diving: Cal Men Qualify Two Divers, UCLA’s Hallaselka Leads Women’s Field

2024 NCAA ZONE E CHAMPIONSHIPS

The final piece of the NCAA Championship qualification puzzle is the Zone Diving Championships, which are running from five sites this week across the country.

The Zone E Championships wrapped up on Wednesday from Northern Arizona University’s Wall Aquatic Center, finalizing the divers who have punched their ticket to the NCAA Championships later this month.

Of course, teams near or at the roster limit can scratch divers if they choose to, though that only applies to a few select teams. In the vast majority of cases, qualifying at their respective Zone competition locks in a diver’s NCAA spot.

Note that divers only count as a half a participant in terms of the 18-participant roster cap.

Simplified Qualifying Process:

  • The top five female and top four male divers from each event at their respective zone championship automatically qualify for NCAAs.
  • Each zone then earns an additional number of qualifying spots in each event based on how it performed at last season’s NCAAs.
  • Divers who qualify in one event can also compete in other event(s) at NCAAs provided they finished in the top 12 at their respective Zone meet.

ZONE E ALLOCATIONS

1-Meter 3-Meter Platform
Women 8 8 9
Men 6 5 7

WOMEN’S ZONE E RECAP

Finnish freshman Lauren Hallaselka made her presence known at the Zone E Championships, as the UCLA diver won the women’s 1-meter and 3-meter events going away to pencil herself in as a contender at NCAAs.

On 1-meter, Hallaselka topped USC fifth-year Nike Agunbiade by 21 points, and on 3-meter, Hallaselka was over 57 points clear of the runner-up, Utah’s Swedish freshman Emilia Nilsson Garip.

Agunbiade went on to win on platform, having finished 5th in the event at NCAAs last season. She also scored on 3-meter last season, but did not compete in that event at the Zone E Championships.

Nevada’s Melissa Mirafuentes and the Utah duo of Holly Waxman and Kathryn Grant were the three divers that qualified to compete in every event at NCAAs.

Stanford, which figures to feature prominently in the team race at NCAAs, qualified two divers, junior Lauren Burch and sophomore Emilie Moore. Burch was the team’s lone diver at nationals last year, taking 28th on 3-meter and 33rd on platform.

Women’s Zone E Qualifiers – By Event

Women’s 1-Meter Women’s 3-Meter Platform
1 Lauren Hallaselka, UCLA Lauren Hallaselka, UCLA Nike Agunbiade, USC
2 Nike Agunbiade, USC Emilia Nilsson Garip, Utah Eden Cheng, UCLA
3 Melissa Mirafuentes, Nevada Zoe Jespersgaard, UCLA Holly Waxman, Utah
4 Lauren Burch, Stanford Melissa Mirafuentes, Nevada Emilie Moore, Stanford
5 Holly Waxman, Utah Holly Waxman, Utah Lauren Burch, Stanford
6 Kathryn Grant, Utah Brooke Earley, Arizona Savana Trueb, UCLA
7 Brooke Earley, Arizona Kathryn Grant, Utah Kathryn Grant, Utah
8 Emilia Nilsson Garip, Utah Mackenna Stocker, NAU Grace Lee, USC
9 Melissa Mirafuentes, Nevada

Women’s Zone E Qualifiers – Full List

NCAA Qualifiers Event(s)
1 Lauren Hallaselka, UCLA 1m, 3m
2 Nike Agunbiade, USC 1m, Platform
3 Melissa Mirafuentes, Nevada 1m, 3m, Platform
4 Lauren Burch, Stanford 1m, Platform
5 Holly Waxman, Utah 1m, 3m, Platform
6 Kathryn Grant, Utah 1m, 3m, Platform
7 Brooke Earley, Arizona 1m, 3m
8 Emilia Nilsson Garip, Utah 1m, 3m
9 Zoe Jespersgaard, UCLA 3m, 1m*
10 Mackenna Stocker, NAU 3m
11 Eden Cheng, UCLA Platform
12 Emilie Moore, Stanford Platform, 1m*
13 Savana Trueb, UCLA Platform, 3m*
14 Grace Lee, USC Platform

*Events in which the diver didn’t finish in a designated spot but qualified by virtue of a top-12 finish.

MEN’S ZONE E RECAP

Stanford junior Jack Ryan swept the men’s springboard events, dominating on 3-meter on Monday as he emerged with the victory by 128 points.

Ryan, who was 3rd on 1-meter at last season’s NCAAs, followed up by winning that event on Sunday over USC’s Shangfei Wang, who was 5th in the event at the 2023 NCAAs.

On platform, USC sophomore Laurent Gosselin-Paradis edged out Cal freshman and fellow Canadian Geoffrey Vavitsas for the victory.

Gosselin-Paradis, who was 18th on 1-meter at NCAAs as a freshman, followed up on his platform win by qualifying on 1-meter, and also finished in the top-12 on 3-meter to earn a spot in all three events at NCAAs.

Joining him in qualifying for all events was Cal Baptist’s Gael Jimenez, Arizona’s Gage Dubois and Cal’s Joshua Thai.

At the 2023 NCAAs, Thai was Cal’s lone diver, contributing three points to their national title victory after placing 14th on platform.

Men’s Zone E Qualifiers – By Event

Men’s 1-Meter Men’s 3-Meter Platform
1 Jack Ryan, Stanford Jack Ryan, Stanford Laurent Gosselin-Paradis, USC
2 Shangfei Wang, USC Gael Jimenez, CBU Geoffrey Vavitsas, Cal
3 Mario Del Valle Jr, CBU Shangfei Wang, USC Mario Del Valle Jr, CBU
4 Elias Petersen, Utah Elias Petersen, Utah Robert Gref, USC
5 Laurent Gosselin-Paradis, USC Hunter Hollenbeck, Stanford Gage Dubois, Arizona
6 Gael Jimenez, CBU Joshua Thai, Cal
7 Mackaby Pennington, Hawaii

Men’s Zone E Qualifiers – Full List

NCAA Qualifiers Event(s)
1 Jack Ryan, Stanford 1m, 3m
2 Gael Jimenez, CBU 1m, 3m, Platform*
3 Shangfei Wang, USC 1m, 3m
4 Elias Petersen, Utah 1m, 3m
5 Hunter Hollenbeck, Stanford 3m
6 Laurent Gosselin-Paradis, USC 1m, Platform, 3m*
7 Geoffrey Vavitsas, Cal Platform, 3m*
8 Mario Del Valle Jr, CBU 1m, Platform
9 Robert Gref, USC Platform
10 Gage Dubois, Arizona Platform, 1m*, 3m*
11 Joshua Thai, Cal Platform, 1m*, 3m*
12 Mackaby Pennington, Hawaii Platform

*Events in which the diver didn’t finish in a designated spot but qualified by virtue of a top-12 finish.

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Dan
2 months ago

I think I remember reading about reimburse vs non-reimbursed divers for NCAA (not sure if that was last year or the year before). Does that still apply and how does that work?

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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