Southampton Diving Academy – National Age Group Diving Championships 2016
At the beginning of July, 20 divers and 3 coaches made the long journey to Sheffield to compete at the Ponds Forge International Sports Centre in the ASA National Age Group Finals competition. Taking place over 4 days, this is the pinnacle of the competitive year for divers at this level, and marks the finale to many hard months of training.
The first events were the synchronised diving competitions which are so very impressive to watch, and SDA immediately impressed the judges and got off to a cracking start. Leon Baker and Ethan Bennett performing very consistently to take Gold in Boys 10 – 13 years on the 1m springboard.
Milly Batten and Tia Pritchard were not to be outdone by the boys and took Gold in the same age group for the girls, with barely a score below 8 for their synchronicity.
The partnership of Scott Palmer and Thomas Graham on the 3m earned a silver medal in the boys 14/18 years event. 3 medals in the 4 opening events, so far so good.
And so onto the individual age group events where SDA came away with a further 2 Golds, 2 Silvers and 3 Bronze medals.
At this level of diving, the standard is extremely high and to finish in the top 10 is a great achievement, so Southampton Diving Academy were delighted when they found themselves with a 1,2 in the Boys 10/11 Years Platform event with Leon Baker taking Gold just ahead of team mate Milo French after some remarkable diving between the two of them effectively leaving the other 21 divers in this group behind. Leon went on to take a Bronze on the 1m springboard and 5th place on the 3m springboard with Milo in 6th place and 7th place respectively. Team mate Robbie Lee also managed 2 top ten placings in both the 3m and Platform events.
In the Girls 10/11 Years events, SDA had only one entrant, Dulcie Wilson who in spite of diving with a lower degree of difficulty than many of her opponents, achieved 10th on the 1m, 8th on the 3m and 5th on the Platform with only 0.5 points between her score and the Bronze medal.
In the Boys 12/13 Years events, Ethan Bennett came from way down on the scoreboard after his first dive, showing true grit and determination to take the Bronze on the Platform, with just 2.7 points separating Gold, Silver and Bronze. He also made 5th place on the 3m.
Milly Batten in the Girls 12/13 Years events achieved 2 top ten placings, finishing 8th in both the 1m and Platform events.
Reuben Brown improved over the course of the week taking a solid 7th place in Boys 14/15 Years Platform event and Jessica Bennett managed a 10th place on the Platform for Girls 14/15 Years having dived steadily throughout against some very good divers.
Scott Palmer and Thomas Graham gave Southampton another 1,2 in the Boys 16/18 Years on the 1m Springboard, with team mates William Osborne in 5th and Elliot Moorhouse in 6th. Thomas made 4th place on the 3m losing out on the bronze with a risky final dive, Scott finished 5th with William in 9th and Elliot in 10th. Scott took another medal on the Platform, this time a Bronze, with William in 4th and Thomas in 5th.
This was a really successful meet for the youngsters taking part, many of them qualifying at this level for the first time in their young careers and the coaching team of Jack Clewlow, Sam Hydes and Matt Roberts were full of praise for their efforts and conduct throughout.
Boys 10/11 1m: L Baker 3rd, M French 6th, Robbie Lee 16th: 3m: L Baker 5th, M French 7th, Robbie Lee 8th, Platform : L Baker 1st, M French 2nd, R Lee 10th
Girls 10/11 1m : D Wilson 10th, 3m : D Wilson 8th, Platform : D Wilson 5th
Boys 12/13 1m: E Bennett 14th, A Walton 15th, A Burnard 23rd 3m : E Bennett 5th, A Walton 20th, A Burnard 26th, Platform : E Bennett 3rd, A Burnard 18th, A Walton 22nd
Girls 12/13 1m : M Batten 8th, T Pritchard 12th, S Sathio 27th, V Ward 34th 3m: M Batten 16th, T Pritchard 21st, S Sathio 28th, v Ward 32nd Platform : M Batten 8th, T Pritchard 12th, S Sathio 25th, V Ward 27th
Boys 14/15 1m : R Brown 16th 3m : R Brown 14th Platform : R Brown 7th
Girls 14/15 1m : J Bennett 11th, S Torpey 14th, G Kirkham 18th 3m: S Torpey 14th, J Bennett 15th, G Kirkham 20th Platform : J Bennett 10th, S Torpey 13th, G Kirkham 16th
Girls 16/18 1m: K McArthur 10th 3m K McArthur 12th
Boys 16/18 1m : S Pamer 1st, T Graham 2nd, W Osborne 5th, E Moorhouse 6th 3m : T Graham 4th, S Palmer 5th, W Osborne 9th, E Moorhouse 10th Platform: S Palmer 3rd, W Osborne 4th, T Graham 5th
Boys 10/13 Synchro 1m: L Baker & E Bennett 1st, A Walton & A Burnard 9th, R Lee & M French 13th
Boys 14/18 Synchro 3m: S Palmer & T Graham 1st
Girls 10/13 1m Synchro : M Batten & T Pritchard 1st, S Sathio & V Ward 7th
Girls 14/18 3m Synchro : S Torpey & K McArthur 8th, J Bennett & G Kirkham 9th