Diving competes in first major meet

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Diving competes in first major meet

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The Iowa men’s and women’s diving teams are on the road this weekend as they take part in the Minnesota Diving Invitational beginning today.

The three-day meet will feature competition from Ohio State, Michigan, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Minnesota, as well as Iowa State and Houston.

On the men’s side, Ohio State is ranked No. 16 and Michigan is ranked No. 4 in the newest College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America rankings released on Nov. 8. In that poll, Iowa moved from being unranked to being No. 20 after upsetting Purdue on Nov. 3.

For the women, Michigan is ranked No. 4, Minnesota is ranked 15th, Wisconsin is No. 19, and Ohio State comes in at No. 23.

Being a freshman against some big competition can be nerve-racking, but it’s all about putting the situation into perspective.

“There’s some nerves, but I also have to realize that I am a freshman and I’m diving against people who have dived in college for three or four years,” freshman Anton Hoherz said.

The quality competition in a big-meet setting like this can also bring excitement.

“I’m looking forward to competing against some of the colleges that have really high-performing divers, so that’ll be good for my first really big meet,” freshman Jayah Mathews said.

Today and Friday are the 1-meter and 3-meter dive competitions on both the men’s and women’s sides, with the finals starting at 5 p.m. both days.

On Saturday, the platform diving competition will begin at 10 a.m.

This is the first meet that will have a set up much like the Big Ten meet, with one event happening each day with preliminary rounds and a final round.

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It’s also the first meet that features a platform diving competition.

“it’s the first opportunity for our tower divers to dive tower,” diving coach Todd Waikel said. “It’s early in the season for that, but I’m excited for them to get out there and to perform on tower.”

The tower divers on the men’s side are Hoherz and freshman Jonaton Poslingua. Performing on the women’s side for the 10-meter is sophomore Thelma Strandberg.

Going into the platform competition is just working on getting comfortable from the 10-meter platform.

“Really, they’ve been working on their 10-meter dives,” Waikel said. “Again, this is early in the season, but we’re up there now on 10-meter, so really that’s it. Just getting the lifts off and getting up there and doing their dives.”

Having the divers up on the platform this early in the season will be beneficial going forward.

“I think it’ll give us a little more experience up there leading into the bulk of our training,” Waikel said.

This is the second time Iowa will face Minnesota. In the previous meet, on Oct. 27, the men’s team beat then-No. 21 ranked Gophers, 162-139. The women’s team lost to their 17th-ranked opponent, 190-109.

Facing a big opponent again is something the Hawkeyes are looking forward to.

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