GREENSBORO, N.C. – After the first day of the NCAA Zone B Championships at the Greensboro Aquatic Center, senior Ariel Rittenhouse and redshirt junior Katrina Young have punched their tickets to the NCAA Championships next week.
“Our ladies were fantastic today,” head diving coach Patrick Jeffrey said. “We tapered off a little more this week and it worked. We beat some people today that we didn’t beat at ACCs and that’s always a good sign. Ariel and Katrina were lights out today and that’s what you need to do at this meet. I’m so proud of them making it to NCAAs on the first day. That pressure if off.”
In prelims, Young turned in a solid score of 317.10 and was leading the pack of 18 divers heading into the final round, however Young’s tally of 302.55 in finals for a total of 619.55 would land her in second place behind Thea Vock (Miami).
“Ariel and I were very energized and focused during our performance today,” Young said. “It was a great day of diving for us and I am happy we were able to make it to Minnesota on the first day of this qualifying meet.”
Rittenhouse was in fifth place following prelims with a score of 294.25 as she was engaged in a battle between fourth and tenth place after the round. Rittenhouse turned it up a notch in finals, posting the highest average round score (53.32) out of any diver in the field in order to pull her into third place with a final tally of 614.75.
“Today was really exciting and fun with Katrina,” Rittenhouse said. “We both dove very well today and I am looking forward to competing next week in Minnesota and representing Florida State.”
On the priority list for NCAA’s, Young holds the fifth of nine spots, while Rittenhouse ranks seventh. Rittenhouse and Young will join nine of their teammates at the University of Minnesota for the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships which are held from March 20-22.
Rittenhouse will be competing at her third NCAA meet, while Young will dive at her second.
Also competing in the event was Kelsey Goodman and Alexia Gonzalez, who finished 20th (254.80) and 21st (253.30) respectively.
The men contested the 3-meter springboard on Monday and Dylan Grisell led the Seminoles finishing in eighth place with a total of 715.00 just ahead of Tom Neubacher, who was ninth with a tally of 707.95 over the course of 12 dives.
Mikey Lewark also competed in the final round, finishing in 13th with 680.75.
In prelims, Kalonji Cole finished in 23rd place (287.55), while Dustin Miller placed 27th (276.30).
“Dylan had a nice day,” Jeffrey said. “Tom and Mikey also had solid days, but 3-meter isn’t really their best event. For Tom it’s
tomorrow, but for Mikey and Dylan it’s more platform and with how tough our zone is, you’ve got to bring it.”
Prelims for Tuesday’s meet begin at 11 a.m. with men’s 1-meter and will be followed by women’s 3-meter.
For more information on FSU swimming and diving check back to Facebook and Twitter.