Dantin, Aguero Qualify for NCAA Championships at Zone Diving Meet
March 5, 2012
AUBURN, Ala. - Auburn will have two more entries when it hosts the 2012 NCAA Women's Swimming & Diving Championships at its home pool next week as senior divers Vennie Dantin and Anna Aguero qualified for the meet on Monday at the NCAA Zone B Diving Regional at the James E. Martin Aquatics Center.
Dantin won the women's 1-meter championship while Aguero took third place, both earning automatic bids to the NCAA Championships, which runs March 15-17 in Auburn. With the two divers qualified, Auburn's total entry list for the women's championship now stands at 13 individuals. The top four spots on the women's 1-meter and top three spots in men's 3-meter automatically qualified for their respective NCAA meet.
"It was a great first day for us, led by our seniors," Auburn head diving coach Jeff Shaffer said. "Vennie and Anna did an outstanding job of doing what they needed to do to advance to the NCAA Championships. And I was really proud of our two freshman girls that stepped up in their first Zone meet and competed really, really well. I'm encouraged by the way we competed, and I'm looking forward to tomorrow and Wednesday."
Dantin posted a 12-dive total of 594.55 to take the top spot; she was also the top qualifier in the preliminary round with a score of 305.80. She was consistent throughout the competition, only missing on one dive on either of her six-dive lists. The 2012 SEC 1-meter champion will compete in her third NCAA Championships meet, looking to add to her collection of four All-America honors.
Aguero will make her second trip to the national championships as she finished third with a score of 583.85. The Moultrie, Ga., came through for Auburn in the clutch to earn her way into the meet. Sitting in fifth place with one dive left, Aguero nailed her front two-and-a-half, scoring a 59.80 - the highest single-dive score by any diver in the event - to vault into third place, jumping Florida State's Ariel Rittenhouse and Tennessee's Tori Lamp.
Freshmen Shanna Schuelein and Cinzia Calabretta advanced to the finals, posting solid showings in their first NCAA Zone meet. Schuelein earned a 15th-place finish with a 532.55, and Calabretta posted a 520.30 to finish 17th. Calabretta's score of 268.60 in the 1-meter preliminary was a season- and career-best.
South Carolina's Courtney Forcucci took second place and Tennessee's Tori Lamp was fourth to round out the women's automatic qualifiers. Dantin, Forcucci and Lamp all won individual conference titles at last month's SEC Championships.
On the men's side, sophomore John Santeiu earned an eighth-place finish in the 3-meter final with a score of 727.15, and Adam Godzinski finished 11th with a score of 716.85. Godzinski was the 10th qualifier with a 356.95 in the preliminary while Santieu qualified 12th with a 347.75 before coming back with a strong second list in the final.
"Adam did a great first list and a solid second list, and that was great for him to show his senior leadership and experience at this level," Shaffer said. "John was a little off on his first list, but came back and did a great second list. The one thing about this Zone meet is that you're not out of it until the last event is done."
Miami's Samuel Dorman took the championship with a score of 793.45 while the Tennessee pair of Mauricio Robles and Ryan Helms finished second and third, respectively, to earn the three automatic NCAA qualifying spots.
The second day of the NCAA Zone B Diving Regional gets underway with men's 1-meter preliminaries at 11 a.m. with finals to follow. The women's 3-meter prelims are scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m., and finals will follow immediately thereafter. Live scoring is available through DiveMeets.com, and admission is free for all sessions of the meet at the Martin Aquatics Center.
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