Indianapolis, Ind.- The last day of prelims and semifinals concluded today with the heavily contested Men’s 3-meter and Women’s 10-meter events. The first event of the day, and largest event of the competition, was the Men’s 3-meter where 34 divers took to the boards in the hopes of earning one of the 18 slots into the subsequent semifinals.
2021 NCAA National Champion, Andrew Capobianco came out strong on his first dive scoring an 85 on his Reverse 2 ½ Somersault Twist Pike. Capobianco eventually finished his first round of dives seated in third place heading into semifinals, ousted by incoming Purdue freshman Tyler Downs as well as David Boudia. This marks Boudia’s first Olympic Trials competing in the 3-meter competition after qualifying for three consecutive Games in the 10-meter platform to include an Olympic Gold Medal as well as two Bronze Medals and one Silver.
Boudia went on to maintain his top position through the semifinals, scoring an 84 on his Reverse 3 1/2 Somersault Tuck on his fifth dive and concluding his list with an 80.5 on his Reverse 1 1/2 Somersault 3 1/2 Twist Free to earn him a cumulative score of 889.70. 15 points back from Boudia sits Grayson Campbell. Campbell put together a solid list, including scoring an impressive 89.25 on his Reverse 3 1/2 Somersault Tuck. Behind our two leaders sit Tyler Downs and 2016 Olympic Silver Medalist Mike Hixon. With less than 20 points separating the top four athletes, Sunday’s final is shaping up to be an epic battle of the titans.
In the equally anticipated Women’s 10-Meter, 2016 Olympian Katrina Young and synchro partner Murphy Bromberg swapped places for the top spot ending the preliminary round with less than three points separating them. As they moved through the semifinals, the duo continued to toggle between first and second with Young eventually earning the top seed into the finals with a cumulative score of 663.50 with Bromberg trailing by 6 points. Also sitting within reach of Tokyo is 2019 World Championship Bronze Medalist, Delaney Schnell as well as 2016 Olympian Jessica Parratto.
Tonight also marked the return of a beloved and familiar face on the platform, 2000 Olympic Champion, Laura Wilkinson. The 43 year-old mother of four not only made a comeback after a 12-year hiatus from competitive diving, she also qualified for the finals in 9th place.
Men’s 3-Meter Standings After Semifinals
1. David Boudia* 889.70
2. Grayson Campbell* 874.20
3. Michael Hixon* 873.55
4. Tyler Downs* 869.90
5. Briadam Herrera* 849.80
6. Andrew Capobianco* 825.50
7. Quentin Henninger* 747.15
8. Jacob Fielding* 737.45
9. Jake Butler* 713.25
10. Noah Vigran* 701.85
11. Noah Duperre* 699.25
12. Evan Moretti* 698.60
13. Jack Matthews 695.95
14. Maxwell Weinrich 691.25
15. Nathaniel Hernandez 686.75
16. Carson Tyler 684.35
17. Jack Ryan 677.95
18. Gregory Duncan 658.20
Women’s 10-Meter Standings after Semifinals
1. Katrina Young* 663.50
2. Murphy Bromberg* 656.65
3. Delaney Schnell* 649.75
4. Jessica Parratto* 640.05
5. Amy Magana* 602.35
6. Abigail Knapton* 575.50
7. Janie Boyle* 569.40
8. Daryn Wright* 540.05
9. Laura Wilkinson* 514.55
10. Olivia Rosendahl* 513.70
11. Madison Huitt* 509.50
12. Maggie Merriman* 508.35
13. Nike Agunbiade 500.50
14. Kaylee Bishop 489.05
15. Jordan Skilken 470.05
16. Sophia McAfee 463.00
17. Markie Hopkins 458.60
18. Christy Cutshaw 405.75
*signifies finals qualification
Finals for both events will take place on Sunday June 13, 2021 at 7pm EST beginning with the Men’s 3m.
“This is my first Olympic Trials on the 3-meter. I haven't dove in a high-pressure situation since 2019. It's just a little different; the training wasn't as idle as I wanted it to. I think the hardest part was getting through the prelims and semifinal. Obviously, I have a little lead, but going into the finals, I have absolutely no lead with that mindset, so I start back at 0 with everyone else but stay consistent like tonight.”
When asked how he felt about his dives:
“During the semifinal, I wasn't satisfied with any of them. I can do better with all six of those dives. It just matters going into finals using the energy-based off of that. I was a little flat, I felt but trying to take it, one dive at a time, I think staying relaxed.”
When asked what it’s like having so many Purdue alumni at Trials competing:
It was a blast during the prelims yesterday with the men's 10-meter platform. I think the first two rounds were all top 4, all Purdue. I think that was pretty fun to see. Tyler Downs diving right before me, putting on pressure. It's just exciting for the future of Purdue diving. I'm excited to work with the young guns and hopefully get them ready for competition alongside Adam.
When asked how he is going to prepare for finals:
“Anytime you do an Olympic Trials, it's definitely a marathon. It's a long week of competition I’ll take tomorrow off; I'm excited to see all three of the kiddos. I think whether it went extremely well tonight or extremely bad, the most fun part is wake up tomorrow; they are just going to be running downstairs.”
When asked if this trials feels different with less fans:
“I know my wife would have a harder time with fans with three kids bouncing around off the chairs, being distracting. I'm sure she is actually enjoying some downtime watching this, and it's like any competition as an athlete try getting into the zone and focus on what you're doing and that minute.”
“My synchro partner and I got off to a good start on Monday. We dove well, and in that competition, I worked out a little bit of the nerves I had at the beginning and confidence that I carried into today. Coming to prelims, I knew that if I could come out there and dive how I've been diving at practice, then I could kinda be in a place where I am right now. Didn't quite know how close it would. I knew after prelims it would be really tight. I think it was 13 points or 23 points between 4th and 2nd and 5th was another 10 points back. So vying for that second spot, it was super tight, so coming to semifinals, it definitely was a challenge knowing you had to come back and dive really well again. People were going to be charging from behind and at the top group as well.”
When asked if it’s different competing in a cumulative meet versus round-to-round:
“I graduated last year, and in my four years of college, we never had cumulative meets other than our Zone Championship, which qualifies you for the NCAA Championship. There are a few parallels with that and the Olympic trials, but it's usually top 12 or top 8 where top 2 puts a little bit more pressure on. So cumulative diving is definitely a little different because you aren't thinking 6 dives at a time, and you want to keep building the momentum.”
When asked what it’s like to have his collegiate teammates (U Texas) at the event:
“It's honestly amazing because whether if I'm competing that night or not, I can watch my teammates dive feel a little bit of nerves myself because I want them to do well, and it kinda of build an atmosphere around the hotel and car ride over here and pool deck where it kind of motivates us, and we are each other biggest supporters. It's a lot of fun watching others have successful meets.”
When asked how COVID and the lack of competition has impacted his training and preparation:
“My last competition prior to Trials was Mid-March 2020. That was the Zone championship for college. It's been really weird adjusting to COVID. Having graduated, I had to find myself a job, so I was use to training and school and living the student-athlete life, and now I'm trying to balance a full-time job and diving, which has been an interesting adjustment. It has been very stressful. Diving hasn't been much of a focus than it's usually been. I think it's also really nice to get my head on straight since I can kind of take my mind away from it and come to the pool. I'm in the tech field.”
When asked what it’s like to be back in competition after 12 years:
“There are parts that are like riding a bike there, the competitive part that doesn't feel quite there yet since I haven't been up 10 meters much, we haven't had many meets. I wasn't back up there until two months before the pandemic because I had to have neck surgery and spent a year recovering. It's been a crazy road. I have to remember that being here is the gift itself.”
When asked what it’s like having her kids in the stands for this competition:
“It's pretty cool seeing them. Having them watch me go through the atmosphere and realizing it's important and understand all the time I've been doing it. They sometimes have asked me why can't I stay home and for them to see what this is, and what I’ve been working towards, it's pretty special.”
When asked what advice she would give to other moms:
“When I became a mom, and I don’t know if it’s like a culture thing, or it's something as a mom where you get in your head that my time is over and that it's my time to be there for your kids. It's so not true you can have kids and have dreams and do things and bring them along for the ride. When they can watch you and be part of that experience with you, it speaks so much louder to them than telling them how to live and be, and they could just see you do it that makes a bigger lasting impression.”
When asked how it feels to be diving alongside people who she inspired to start diving in the first place:
It's a little weird. I grew up with role models, and I remember getting gymnastics autography. It just made my whole weird, and I kept them for like 20 years. I understand how it feels being on this side of it this time. But it's also kind of rewarding because day in and day out, you don't realize how much you're impacting people. You come to a meet like this, and people are coming up to me all the time, and I was the reason they started, or I was the reason they kept going. That is a gift and of itself.
“The prelims were great. I felt really great. Semis, that was probably my hardest meets of my life. I usually got to bed at 8 pm, so I’m really tired!”
When asked how she prepared during COVID for Trials:
“It's been a smooth transition. I am really lucky that my team has been so incredible. Texas, the team we have done a lot of mock meets. Our energy at practice is incredible when we are on 10 meter I don't do a dive before I get cheers because that the environment we have on the pool deck. That environment helps create a smooth transition.”
When asked if having synchro partner, Katrina Young also in the top two gives them a confidence boost heading into synchro finals:
I love Katrina, so it's so funny to switch back and forth and we know what we are capable of, and we are exciting to putting together a great list.
When asked how she feels compared to the 2016 Olympic Trials
Compare to 2016 I'm a different person mentally and physically. In 2016 to now, I couldn't train because I had a shoulder injury, so it's been completely different. I have a totally different mentality, and it's helping.
When asked why she reads between dives:
I like to get to the part at the end of the book where everything starts to happen, so I'm completely soaked into that. On the last round, I couldn't make it to the end of the chapter, so I get totally immersed in that.
When asked about her family coming in to watch her, especially after not seeing them as much over the past year:
“I have a huge support system, and my mom came to Austin in May, and I just knew the stress would be building up, so she came. On one of the last days, she drove me to practice and told me no matter what happens, they are so proud of me, win or lose, we are going to pop a bottle of champagne because we have a lot to celebrate. It means a lot that everybody is there for you no matter what.”
Competition continues tomorrow with the Women’s 3-Meter Synchro finals where top-seeded duo Krysta Palmer and Alison Gibson will face off against Sarah Bacon and Kassidy Cook for the opportunity to represent their country next month in Tokyo. The event will be broadcast on NBC beginning at 7pm EST.
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