Diver Ashley Rubenstein Captures 1-meter U.S. National Title; Margaret Hoelzer Earns Bronze

Ashley Rubenstein

Aug. 2, 2006

Auburn, Ala. - Former Auburn two-time All-American Ashley Rubenstein captured her first U.S. National title on Wednesday evening at the 2006 Kaiser Permanente Senior Championships in Indianapolis, Ind. AU Olympian Margaret Hoelzer captured bronze in the 100m back at the USA Swimming National Championships in Irvine, Calif.

Rubenstein (Columbia, Mo.) put together a five-dive finals total of 278.75 to take gold over 2005 national champion Kelci Bryant by 5.45 points. She averaged a score of 55.75 with an average degree of difficulty of 2.46 during the finals. On her final dive, a forward 1.5 somersault, 2 twisting free (DD of 2.6) Rubenstein was awarded her highest total of all three rounds, a 59.80, to clinch the victory.

"I competed pretty well all day," Rubenstein said. "The 1-meter format is back-to-back prelim, semifinals and finals and this format really worked for me. I just kept getting better with every list that I performed. It came down to my final dive in the finals. After Kelci performed a gorgeous final dive right before me the pressure was on. I had to do that final dive better than I had ever done it before and that is exactly what I did. I am very excited for myself and for my coach, Jeff Shaffer, we both have worked very hard all summer and this is an excellent way to conclude the year."

In swimming action, Alabama native Hoelzer captured bronze in the 100m back with a finals time of 1:01.93, nearly half a second faster that her prelim mark. She went on to finish fourth in the B final of the 200m free, touching the pads in 2:01.62.

Also competing in a championship final was rising-senior James Wike. Wike turned in a personal best 55.21 in the prelim round and entered the finals as the fourth seed. Wike swam a 55.38 in the finals to take seventh. His prelim time was just off a new Auburn record.

Incoming freshman Matt Bartlett swam an improved 2:01.05 in the B final of the 200m fly to finish second. Rising-senior John Scott almost equaled his personal best set in the prelim, 2:01.10. In the finals Scott touched the wall in 2:01.19 to take fourth in the B final. Also competing in a B final was rising-sophomore Margo McCawley in the 100m back. McCawley swam more than a half a second faster in the finals, 1:03.51, to take third.

In C final action, senior Doug Van Wie rebounded back from a disappointing disqualification in the 100m back prelim, to win the 200m free C final (1:50.39). Newcomer Ava Ohlgren was also victorious in the women's C final 200m free (2:01.83). Rising-senior Adrienne Binder took fifth (2:02.38). Mark Johnson rounded out the Auburn competitors, as the rising-senior finished eighth in the 200m fly (2:05.35).

Competing in the morning prelim's were Will Dove (200m free), Emile Ewing (200m free), Scott Goodrich (100m back), Kristen Hastrup (200m free), Emily Kukors (200m free), Logan Madson (200m fly), McCawley (200m free), Joey Schneider (200m free) and Daniel Slocki (200m free).

Rubenstein will compete again on 3-meter with the prelim's scheduled for later in the week and finals on Saturday.

For more information on the ConocoPhillips USA Swimming National Championships visit www.usaswimming.org. Omega timing will provide live results via www.omegatiming.com. For diving results from the 2006 Kaiser Permanente Senior Championships, please visit www.usadiving.org