Dec. 22, 2013
AUSTIN, Texas -- David Boudia completed a sweep of the men's 3-meter events with a victory in the synchronized competition and three other Boilermakers also won medals on the final day of the USA Diving Winter Nationals Sunday.
National Letter of Intent signee Steele Johnson was victorious from the 10-meter platform to complete a sweep of the men's 10-meter events and earn a berth in the FINA World Cup this summer. Fellow NLI signee Anna James won the women's synchronized 10-meter platform competition with partner Jessica Parratto of Indiana University. James locked up her spot at the FINA World Cup by finishing second in the individual 10-meter platform Saturday.
Casey Matthews finished as the runner-up in the women's 3-meter springboard to claim her second silver medal of the 2013 Winter Nationals. She also took second in synchronized 3-meter with Michelle Cabassol Saturday. Cabassol was 10th in the individual competition Sunday. Sean Mokhtari took sixth in the men's 10-meter platform in the final event of the Winter Nationals.
Boudia claimed his 18th career USA Diving national title by winning the synchronized 3-meter with the University of Miami's Sam Dorman. Boudia earned his FINA World Cup berth with his victory in the individual competition Saturday.
The Boiler Diving Academy (Boudia and Johnson) were second in the men's team standings. Purdue University (Cabassol, Matthews and MacKenzie Tweardy) took third in the women's team standings. The Purdue men were 10th.
The 2013 USA Diving Winter National Championships came to a close Sunday with four more national titles awarded at the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center. Along with the winners with Purdue ties, Maren Taylor won the women's 3-meter title.
With their wins, Johnson and Taylor qualified to represent the United States at the 2014 FINA World Cup, the top international meet next season. The top two individual finishers on 3-meter and 10-meter who also meet minimum score and degree of difficulty requirements are selected to the team. David Dinsmore won the silver medal on 10-meter to earn a World Cup berth, and Laura Ryan finished fourth on 3-meter to earn the second World Cup spot on that event (the second and third-place finishers, including Matthews, did not meet the degree of difficulty requirements). Synchronized teams for the World Cup will be selected at a separate trial in April.
Johnson captured his third individual 10-meter national title with 1469.70 points over three lists of dives. He scored more than 80 points on five of six dives in the finals, with his reverse 3 ½ tuck earning six 10s for 102 points in round five of the finals.
"I just shut my brain off before competition and let whatever happened happen," Johnson said. "I've been practicing like I'm in a competition so that when it comes time to compete, it just feels like another practice. I had a lot of fun out there today."
Dinsmore, who won the synchronized 10-meter title with Johnson on Saturday, scored 1240.60 points to edge bronze medalist Toby Stanley by four points for the silver medal. Dinsmore was in fourth place heading into the final round before coming up with his best dive of the day. His back 2 ½ with 1 ½ earned three 10s and 92.80 points to move him up to second ahead of Stanley and Zach Cooper, who finished fourth with 1224.00 points.
Taylor won her second national title in two days, having won the synchronized 3-meter title Saturday. In the individual final, Taylor finished with 923.90 points to win her first individual title and a spot on the World Cup team.
Matthews scored 907.75 points for silver, with Emma Ivory-Ganja taking bronze at 882.30. Ryan finished fourth with 879.90 points.
Dorman picked up two medals in men's synchronized 3-meter, winning both the gold and silver. He and Boudia scored 799.77 over two lists of dives to take the gold, while Dorman and Darian Schmidt finished second with 778.95 points. Dwight Dumais and Aaron Fleshner scored 763.83 points for bronze.
A day after winning silver and bronze individually on 10-meter, James and Parratto won the gold in synchronized 10-meter with 610.56 points over two list of dives. Samantha "Murphy" Bromberg and Cheyenne Cousineau were second with 569.61 points.
The University of Texas won the overall team title as well as the men's team title. The University of Miami won the women's team title. Miami's Kara McCormack won the women's high point award. She advanced to the finals in all three individual events and finished seventh on 10-meter and eighth on 1-meter and 3-meter. She also was eighth in synchronized 3-meter. Fleshner, who won the men's 1-meter gold, was the men's high point award winner.
-- Story by Jen Lowery, USA Diving