McKEAN WINS 1-METER TITLE AT AUBURN DIVING INVITATIONAL
AUBURN – Auburn sophomore Fraser McKean narrowly missed setting a new school record on the 1-meter springboard, and six Auburn divers hit personal-best marks Monday on the opening day of the Auburn Diving Invitational at the James E. Martin Aquatic Center.
McKean and junior John Santeiu earned a 1-2 finish in the 1-meter final as both recorded career-best scores. McKean’s finals score of 396.60 was just four points shy of the school record of 400.90, set by Kelly Marx in 2010. It was the second time Monday for McKean to record a personal-best; he also had the top score in prelims with a 373.90.
“I’m obviously very pleased with the guys’ performance, Fraser and John,” Auburn head diving coach Jeff Shaffer said. “They really stepped up in the evening. Fraser was rock-solid in the morning; John missed a twist on one of his dives this morning but stepped up tonight. To see them both get close to 400 points is a big list; where we are in our training, that’s really positive.”
Santeiu, meanwhile, rebounded from a tough morning session to post a 389.05, his career-best on the 1-meter board, for a runner-up finish. Freshman Andrew Laing had the best performance of his young career, posting a sixth-place score of 308.85 for an NCAA Zone qualifying mark, and sophomore Michael Beran (285.15) and freshman Joel Bierwert (career-best 265.55) also had strong outings for the Tigers.
“Andrew Laing competed a back two-and-a-half for the first time in a meet after learning it 30 minutes before the contest, so that was encouraging,” Shaffer said. “And the rest of the guys, Mike and Joel, they stepped up their lists tonight.”
Sophomore Cinzia Calabretta led a trio of Auburn women who posted outstanding scores. Calabretta eclipsed her personal-best on the 3-meter board with a 319.00 to take runner-up honors behind LSU’s Cassie Weil (329.30), and freshman Carly Scheper put together an NCAA Zone-qualifying mark of 303.15 for third place and the best score of her collegiate career. Sophomore Shanna Schuelein had a strong performance of her own with a score of 294.35 to take fourth place.
“On the women’s side, we were much stronger tonight,” Shaffer said. “Cinzia and Carly did a great job, and Shanna was right there as well. We have to learn to challenge ourselves to be a little bit more competitive, and allow us to rise to the abilities that we have. I like where we are, especially at the end of a long semester. Very pleased with today; we’ve got two more days to go.”
LSU DIVER CASSIE WEIL WINS EVENT AT THE AUBURN DIVING INVITATIONAL
BATON ROUGE, La.—LSU freshman diver Cassie Weil turned in a first place finish on the three-meter springboard as the Tigers enjoyed success during the first day of competition at the Auburn Diving Invitational.
Weil notched a score of 329.30 to win the event after posting a score of 341.35 in the prelims.
Junior Kevin Leong (325.25), senior Daniel Helm (322.95) and junior Sean McKinney (318.25) captured third, fourth and fifth, respectively, on the one-meter. Helm’s prelim mark of 338.00 was a season best.
“The high performer of the day was Cassie Weil. The other women had some solid performances, but missed a little bit,” Diving Coach Doug Shaffer said. “Daniel (Helm), Sean (McKinney) and Kevin (Leong) all competed well. Daniel missed on one half of his dives and he would have been in contention. Overall it was a good start to a three-day competition.”
Sophomore Alex Bettridge snagged a seventh place finish on the three-meter with a total of 275.97. Senior Elle Schmidt finished her run in 10th (270.95), followed by freshman Allie Alter in 11th (237.70).
“It is critical to go through these competitions as rehearsals for our conference, zone and national championships because in all of those events you have a prelim and a final," Shaffer said. "We have to be prepared to compete multiple times during the day at our best.”
The LSU Diving team is competing in a quad meet against host Auburn, Alabama and Georgia Tech.
The teams annually hold this competition at the conclusion of finals and right before the holidays. The meet will continue tomorrow and conclude on Wednesday. The student-athletes will compete in the one-meter, three-meter and platform events.