Boys diving team makes a splash at states

All+four+boys+from+SHS+finished+in+the+top+16+at+states.
All four boys from SHS finished in the top 16 at states.

All four boys from SHS finished in the top 16 at states.

Courtesy of Melissa Prins

Courtesy of Melissa Prins

All four boys from SHS finished in the top 16 at states.

Julia Schwartz, Contributing Writer

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The Solon High School boys diving team competed at the 2018 Ohio High School Athletic Association Swimming and Diving State Tournament at Canton McKinley High School this past weekend. They competed against other division one schools throughout Ohio such as New Albany, Centerville, Westlake, Shaker Heights, St. Ignatius and St. Xavier.

A total of 23 boys competed at the meet. Out of the 23 competitors, sophomore Jackson Salisbury, sophomore Carter Prins, sophomore Joshua Schwartz and junior Jacob Smrdel represented SHS.

Each diver performed a total of 11 dives, and each dive was scored on a scale of one to ten by seven judges with their highest and lowest scores voided. The remaining five scores were then averaged and multiplied by the degree of difficulty for the dive. This score was then added to their total to give the divers their final score.

All competitors performed five dives before the divers were cut down to the top 20. Most of the four SHS divers had strong, consistent dives in the first round, scoring within the ranges of 5.5-8. However, Schwartz’s second dive received a lower range of 4.5-6.

“I was fine with [getting lower scores] because I knew that I had other dives that could make up for it with the points.” Schwartz said.

Smrdel’s fourth dive also received lower scores, ranging from 4-5.5 but this did not deter him at all.

“Whenever I don’t hit a dive right or something goes wrong I never let it get to me,” Smrdel said. “I just accept that it wasn’t as good as I wanted it to be and I move on to hopefully make up for [it] with my other dives.”

All four of the boys made it into the top 20 at this point Prins was in ninth place with a total of 197.70 points, Smrdel was in tenth place with a total of 197.45 points, Schwartz was in 11th place with a total of 195.35 points and Salisbury was in 12th place with a total of 193.60 points.

After the first elimination round, there were three more dives before the second cut was made to the top 16 competitors. After the sixth dive, there was a malfunction with the scoreboards causing a 15 minute delay right before it was Smrdel’s turn to do his seventh dive, rattling him.

“Don’t get me wrong it was a nice breather, but it definitely doesn’t help keep my momentum up.” Smrdel said.

Nevertheless, dives six to eight were solid for the four boys, with all of them scoring within a range of  5.5-8. All four of the SHS divers made the second elimination round, meaning that they all got into the top 16. The scores from this round were added to their previous totals which changed some rankings. Smrdel moved to eighth place with a total of 315.75 points, Salisbury moved to ninth place with a total of 313.00 points, Prins moved to tenth place with a total of 306.15 points and Schwartz stayed in 11th place with a total of 195.35 points. SHS head diving Coach Marc Cahalane was very impressed with the scores of his team this far in the meet.

“I believe it’s a record,” said Cahalane. “I don’t think we have ever had four Solon boys in the top 16 in finals.”

After the competitors got through the last elimination, they performed their last three dives. The SHS boys were again steady in dives 9-11, most of them getting scores from a range of 5.5-8. On these last three dives, Salisbury got his lowest scores, including a 3.5 on his ninth dive and a 4.5. on his eleventh dive, yet Schwartz got his best scores of the meet on his ninth dive, receiving four eights.

“The dive felt really good so I checked my scores and saw that I got one eight,” Schwartz said. “Then I went over to my Coach Marc and he told me that I got four eights which was a pretty cool thing to hear.”

The meet ended on a strong note for the team. Smrdel placed sixth with a total of 460.25 points, Salisbury placed ninth with a total of 438.85 points, Prins placed 11th with a total of 423.40 points and Schwartz placed 14th with a total of 411.35 points. According to Cahalane, all four divers getting over 400 points is something to be proud of.

“The boys did well, overall I’m very happy,” Cahalane said. “There is a couple things we need to work on but I definitely think that [all four boys] competed with confidence.”

 

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