Larson and Pickens to Compete in World University Games

Larson and Pickens to Compete in World University Games

TUCSON – Arizona diver Sam Pickens and volleyball player Laura Larson will compete in the World University Games, which holds its opening ceremonies Friday in Gwangju, Korea.

Pickens and Larson will represent the University of Arizona while maintaining their red, white and blue competing for Team USA.

Pickens, the NCAA Champion in the 1-meter, will compete in both the 1-meter and 3-meter springboard events at the Games. In her time at Arizona, Pickens, who won the NCAA’s 1-meter crown in both 2013 and 2015, is the first Arizona female to win a national title in diving. Pickens went undefeated in the 1-meter in 2015, including both a Pac-12 and NCAA Championship. The 2013 and 2015 Pac-12 Diver of the Year earned three All-America finishes and holds school records in both the 1-meter (345.90) and 3-meter (379.75).

Women’s diving events begin on Friday. Pickens and the rest of the field will go for gold in the 1-meter on Saturday, July 4, while the 3-meter final is held on Wednesday, July 8.

Pool play for women’s volleyball has already begun, with the eight-team single-elimination tournament beginning on Wednesday, July 8. The gold and bronze medal matches will take place on Saturday, July 11.

Larson, a junior defensive specialist at Arizona, helped lead the Wildcats to their best season in a decade as the Cats went 24-10 and finished 12-8 in the Pac-12, good for third in the loaded league. Larson played in all but one set on the season, totaling 223 digs (1.89/set) while adding 14 assists and a service ace.