COLUMBUS, Ohio – Two more Ohio State divers have qualified for the NCAA swimming and diving championships after competition on the third and final day at the NCAA Zone C championships, held at the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion.
Senior Katie Bell earned an invite to the NCAA championships next weekend at the University of Texas by finishing third on the women’s 10-meter platform event. And Christian Holstein, a freshman, earned an invite based on his fourth-place finish on the three-meter springboard event that was contested Friday.
Bell, from Columbus and Graham High School, totaled 638.30 points to finish comfortably in third-place on platform and secure an appearance in her second NCAA championships.
“I’m very happy with the way I dove today,” the social work major who listens to Blue Grass music between dives said. “All my dives were 10 times better today than what I had been doing.”
Each of the Buckeyes attempting to qualify Saturday for their respective NCAA championships faced formidable challenges. Just three of the 10 NCAA berths from this diving zone were available when Bell and junior Kristen Asman stepped onto the 10-meter platform. The two were seeking to join teammate Bianca Alvarez at the national championships. Alvarez does not compete on platform, but had previously qualified with a win on the 1-meter springboard.
Ohio State’s two men’s divers, Holstein and freshman Shane Miszkiel, faced even stiffer odds with only two opportunities remaining to advance out of this zone to the men’s championships, which will be held in two weeks at the University of Minnesota. And unfortunately, there was nothing Holstein could do about his chances except sit and watch, which he did…nervously. A shoulder issue kept him from competing on the 10-meter Saturday, but he was hoping to get pulled into the championship meet by virtue of his fourth-place finish on three-meter.
And that’s what happened. If any of the five divers who had already qualified for the championships finished first or second on the 10-meter platform, Holstein was in the next qualifying position. Purdue’s David Boudia completed a sweep of all three boards at this zones and Holstein had his initial trip to the NCAA championships secured.
Miszkiel, from Vancouver, British Columbia, faced longer odds of getting pulled into the championships off his fifth-place finish on three-meter, so he was in it to win it on Saturday. Or at least finish second, another qualifying position. He finished fifth with 673.80 points and, unfortunately, one qualifying place outside of an NCAA invite.
Asman gave her best effort, too. The junior from Columbus, Ohio, and Fort Hayes High School advanced to the finals in the ninth position, but she climbed all the way to fifth-place after a fine effort during the five-dive final round with 569.45 points.
Note: The Top 10 women and the Top 7 men on the attached NCAA Qualifiers pdf advance to their respective championships meet.