Central York's Garrett Sommer completed the rare transition of quickly moving from diving novice to reaching the ranks of the state's best. In just his second year in diving, the junior qualified for the state diving championships with a fifth-place finish at the District 3 Class AAA diving championships Saturday at Wilson High School.
"He does have the natural ability to pick things up quickly," Central York diving coach Keith Stair said.
Hershey's Jake Hedrick won the district title with a score of 511.20. Sommer scored 381.75 to earn the final state qualifying spot. The state championships are March 16-17 at Bucknell University.
"This is something he's been working on all year," Stair said.
Sommer's schedule includes practice sessions sandwiched around school.
"Day in and day out he's trying to build consistency," Stair said.
In District 3 girls' diving, the YAIAA top finishers were New Oxford's Rachel Groden (seventh place), Spring Grove's Belle Hippensteel (eighth) and Central's Emily Salter (ninth).
On the boys' side, Central's Nick Cappella (seventh place), Dallastown's Dustin Jones (13th), Northeastern's Josh Freeze (14th) and Red Land's Aaron Lucas (17th) rounded out York's top finishers.
After attending Clarion University's summer diving camp, Sommer continued to put in time all season on improving, Stair said. Sommer's willingness to add the extra flip or twist has paid off with consistent scores in the upper 300s, Stair said, including a 400.25 season-high total recorded earlier this year.
"If he's on, he's unstoppable," Stair added.
District 3 Class AAA diving championships
Saturday’s results at Wilson
1. Jake Hedrick, Her, 511.20. 2 . Nicholas Tomczyk, Ex, 471.80. 3. Nick Cover, Cham, 446.15. 4. Bryce Johnston, Wil, 408.20. 5. Garrett Sommer, CY, 381.75. 6. Henry Isaacson, Her, 349.90. 7. Nick Cappella, CY, 338.80. 8. Brendan Stapley, Ex, 320.25. 9. Jared Keim, Ship, 319.90. 10. Dawson Rutherford, Ex, 313.05. 11. Lance Corson, Wil, 301.90. 12. Derek George, TV, 287.90. 13. Dustin Jones, Dt, 280.45. 14. Josh Freeze, Ne, 272.15, 15. Andrew Kaunert, Wil, 267.50, 16. Elijah Alvarez, Muhl, 252.85. 17. Aaron Lucas, RLa, 191.10.
1. Mary Warker, Wil, 443.05. 2. Nadia Mulder, Her, 434.95. 3. Paige Schoelkopf, Hemp, 407.80. 4. Lyndsey Byers, CCl, 370.20. 5. Lyndsey McIlhenny, Car, 366.20. 6. Meredith Gould, Her, 350.50. 7. Rachel Groden, NO, 334.10. 8. Belle Hippensteel, SG, 334.05. 9. Emily Salter, CY, 331.50. 10. Quincy Blubaugh, Her, 326.54. 11. Caitlyn Christopher, Wil, 325.70. 12. MacKenzie Durf, Ship, 323.65. 13. Morgan MacMahon, GM, 314.25. 14. Emma Gaughan, Mech, 310.60. 15. Payton Perry, CuV, 295.40. 16. Sharlene Jensen, GM, 285.40. 17. Rachael Todaro, CuV, 210.0. 18. Syelee Doshi, GM, 204.60