Ian Forlini has been an All-American diver three years in a row since becoming a high school athlete. He was crowned as the district diving champion in his first three years at William Tennent and even set the district record in the event during his sophomore season.
So, when Forlini took to the pool last weekend at the District One championships, the William Tennent senior was the obvious favorite to win.
He did not disappoint.
Forlini, 17, was crowned as the District One Class AAA boys diving champion for the fourth year in a row. And according to the Georgia University-bound athlete, he didn't even have close to one of his better days.
"There was another good diver who got a lot better since last year, so going into districts, I was just hoping I'd do well and win,' he said. "But we both had a little bit of an off day. We didn't dive perfectly. I was a little bit less off than he was, and it felt good winning all four years. It was a goal of mine.'
The Warminster resident, a former Junior National medalist, scored a 546.70, good for the pool record (previously 496.45). He finished 73.5 points higher than the next best finisher, and will now take his talents to Bucknell next Wednesday at the state tournament, where he finished fifth as a freshman, third as a sophomore and second as a junior.
"It would be awesome to win,' Forlini said. "That's what I'm hoping for this year. I'm hoping to dive well enough to break the state record and I'm also swimming in states this year in the 200 freestyle relay, so that's exciting.'
The Tennent relay team earned sixth place at districts and qualified for states with an at-large bid.
Forlini started swimming when he was young, but decided that he wanted to focus primarily on diving. At only five-years-old, he began diving. At eight, he started diving in club leagues and has been doing so ever since.
His mother, Lisa, is the Tennent boys' and girls' swimming and diving coach, and has been by his side since the beginning.
"(Having my mom as my coach) is a relaxer for me,' Ian said. "I've grown up with her taking me to diving practice every night. Once I started driving, she didn't take me as much, but I've grown up with her in this sport my whole life and I wouldn't want it any other way. I love the individual aspect of the sport and I love pushing myself harder to learn dives and compete as hard as possible.'
After sweeping the Suburban One Continental Conference championships, as well as the district championships, all that is left for Forlini in his high school career is the state tournament next week. With a third-place finish in 2012 and a second-place finish in 2013, some would say he's on pace and due for a win this year.
And after having a less-than-stellar showing at districts — at least according to the senior diver — Forlini now knows what he needs to fix in order to have success at Bucknell.
"I know that I need to clean up my entries on my bigger dives,' he said. "I need to get them cleaner for a higher score and the most points possible.'