Oxford, Ohio - Maria Coburn (Round Rock, Texas/Longhorn Aquatics) won the group A girls 1-meter contest to add a second event to her Junior World Championships schedule, while Manny Borowski (McLean, Va./Dominion Dive Club), Tyler Downs (Ballwin, Mo./Ripfest), Noah Duperre (New Albany, Ohio/Ohio State Diving Club), Hailey Hernandez (Southlake, Texas/GC Diving) and Lyle Yost (Shaker Heights, Ohio/American Flyers Diving) all qualified for the team Friday at USA Diving’s Junior World Championships Trials.
The trials run through April 22 and will determine the team that represents the United States at the 2018 FINA World Junior Championships in Kiev, Ukraine, from July 23-29.
Yost won the boys group A 3-meter contest with 834.05 points after sitting in fourth in the preliminaries. Duperre also climbed in the standings to finish second at 826.70 points after finishing third in prelims.
Yost scored more than 70 points on three of his five dives in the finals, receiving 74.20 points on a reverse 2 ½ tuck and 72 points on a back 2 ½ pike.
“Just going into it, I knew that I’m the only person I can control and that I have to do my best no matter what happens,” Yost said. “It means a lot to make the team. This is something we’ve been training for for months. To finally see my hard work, my coach’s hard work pay off, it’s really great.”
Duperre’s list in the finals included four dives that scored more than 60 points, highlighted by a back 2 ½ pike that earned 69 points.
“Honestly, going into the finals I was really nervous and I wasn’t sure if I could do it. I want to thank my friends and teammates for supporting me. Even Lyle before the event told me, ‘We can do this, we can make up those points.’ That’s exactly what we did,” Duperre said.
In the boys group B 3-meter event, Downs took first with 701.50 points, while Borowski scored 631.75 points to take the second spot by 5.95 points.
Downs was one of only two divers performing a front 3 ½ pike in the final, and he came through with 71.30 points on the dive. All four of his optional dives carried a degree of difficulty of 3.0 or higher, and he scored 63 points or higher on three of them.
“It felt good. It was kind of nerve-wracking. There were a lot of good dives. I was competing one of my dives for the first time, and it went pretty well and make me get on my first world team,” Downs said.
Borowski made his first international team after scoring 50 points or higher on three of his four optionals, including a front 3 ½ tuck that earned 64.40 points.
“It feels amazing. It took a lot of hard work and effort, but it all paid off. Everybody dove amazing and it was a really hard final,” Borowski said.
Coburn added a second event to her schedule at Junior Worlds after winning the group A 1-meter contest with 591.45 points a day after qualifying in synchronized 3-meter. She scored 50 or more points on all four of her optional dives in the final, with her best score coming on a front 2 ½ pike that received 58.50 points. Coburn won the gold medal on 1-meter in the B group at the 2016 World Junior Championships.
“It gives me a lot of confidence going into 3-meter knowing I already have two spots, so there’s not a lot of pressure to make another spot. I’ve had some trouble with a couple of my dives, but it got a little better in the meet and hopefully I can tweak them even more,” Coburn said.
Hernandez secured her spot on the team with 523.55 points in the group B 1-meter contest. She led with 349.55 points after the prelims and then came through with more than 50 points on each of her three optional dives in the final, including a reverse 1 ½ pike that earned a 9 from one judge.
“It means so much, and I’m really excited to be able to represent my country and get a whole new type of experience. I really liked my reverse 1 ½ pike. I’ve been working on it, and I think it turned out pretty well today,” Hernandez said.
The second 1-meter spots in each age group will be determined later and will be filled by the highest finishing diver who makes the team in another event.
Competition at the Junior World Trials continues Saturday with girls competing on platform and boys diving on 1-meter.