Abarca Named Head Coach of Junior National Team

by Alyssa Jacobs, USA Artistic Swimming

USA Artistic Swimming has named Megan Abarca as Head Coach of the junior national team. Abarca has worked with many U.S. national teams, most recently with the junior national team as the assistant coach last summer. This year, she will lead the squad to the 2022 Junior World Championships in Canada.  

I’m excited and honored to be working with the junior national team as they prepare for 2022 Junior World Championships. After a hiatus due to COVID-19, I’m looking forward to having the opportunity to compete against top federations on the international stage. I have greatly enjoyed working with this group of athletes as many of them have grown up in the national talent program and am excited to see what we accomplish together this summer,” Abarca said.  

Abarca has been the head coach of the Stanford artistic swimming team since 2018. Prior to her head coaching role, she was the assistant coach from 2012-2018. While with the Cardinal program, Abarca helped the team claim Collegiate National Championships in 2013, 2016 and 2021, runner-up finishes in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2022 and third-place finishes in 2014 and 2015. In 2021, her team achieved a total collegiate sweep winning the solo, duet, trio and team categories and capturing the Overall Institution Award. Abarca was awarded Collegiate Coach of the Year honors for her efforts. With the holistic care of her student-athletes in mind, Megan’s collegiate student-athletes also thrive in the classroom. 

Abarca began her own artistic swimming career with the Santa Clara Aquamaids at eleven years old. She transitioned to overseeing summer camps and working with novice, intermediate, recreational and age group programs. Her youth teams saw success under her guidance and it was clear she was destined for an impactful career in coaching. As no stranger to the national team programs, Abarca brings a wealth of experience to her new position having served as head coach of the 13-15 national team in 2018 and 2019. Prior to that experience, she served as assistant coach for the 13-15 national team for two years and assistant coach for the 12 & under national team in 2014 and 2015. She also served as the 2013 World University Games assistant coach. 

A graduate of Santa Clara University, Abarca holds a degree in psychology with a minor in economics. Born and raised in California, she currently resides in San Jose with her husband, dog and newborn son.  

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