Dec. 19, 2012
AUBURN - Junior John Santeiu and sophomore Cinzia Calabretta earned victories for the Auburn men and women as the Auburn Diving Invitational wrapped up Wednesday morning with finals in the platform event.
Auburn's men and women combined for three wins and 11 personal-best scores over the three-day meet, closing out the 2012 fall season on a high note.
"Every day had some really positive things to it," Auburn head diving coach Jeff Shaffer said. "There were some plusses and minuses, and some great dives, and some scores on dives that didn't really reflect the corrections that were made. I think everybody had a personal-best somewhere throughout the competition, and we can really build on that heading into our championship season.
"This competition is great camaraderie between the teams (Auburn, Alabama, LSU and Georgia Tech). We all went out last night and had dinner together, had a great time, and it creates a competitive environment where each person is wanting the other to do the very best. Diving is unique in that. We're competing against the other teams, but we also want to see them do well. And that makes us better."
Santeiu led a sweep of the top three spots by the Auburn men with a score of 394.65, just missing a career-best total. Sophomore Fraser McKean was just behind with a career-best score of 388.10, and sophomore Michael Beran took third place with a personal-best of his own, scoring 361.60. Freshman Andrew Laing, competing on tower for the first time as a Tiger, took fifth place with an NCAA Zone qualifying score of 328.80.
Calabretta earned her first collegiate win in the women's platform final with a score of 261.20, finishing just ahead of classmate Shanna Schuelein, who scored a career-best 254.85. Freshman Carly Scheper took fifth place, qualifying for the NCAA Zone meet with a 228.20.
"Cinzia did some really good things," Shaffer said. "Her inward three-and-a-half is still a new dive for her, and it will get there. I was really pleased with everybody's level of competition and their level of learning. We use these competitions to assess where you are, to know what you have to practice to get better. I think this was a great three days of competition to see where we are and what we need to work on."
Auburn's divers will return to action after the holiday break at the Tennessee Diving Invitational, which runs Jan. 3-5 in Knoxville. The full squad will resume the dual meet season Thursday, Jan. 10, as the Texas Longhorns visit Auburn for a 3 p.m. dual meet.