INDIANAPOLIS — University of Florida diver Sam Smith finished 19th overall in the men’s Individual 3-Meter Springboard competitionon Thursday afternoon at the 2015 USA Diving Winter National Championships held inside the IU Natatorium in Indianapolis.
Smith, a Knoxville, Tennessee, native posted a six-dive score of 341.80 in the preliminary session and added 354.35 points in the semi-finals to gather the 19th-place showing. His total points equaled 696.15 points.
The newcomer opened the semi-finals with a Forward 2 1/2 Somersault 1 Twist Pike, which was awarded with 67.50 points — his best dive in the finals session. Smith remained a contender for Saturday’s finals with three dives that registered 63.00 points on his second (1 1/2 Somersault 3 1/2 Twist Free), fourth (Back 2 1/2 Somersault Pike) and sixth (Inward 2 1/2 Somersault Pike) dives, but fell short of the Top-12 finals-advancing places.
Earlier in the prelims, Smith finished 18th overall. His set-opening dive — a Forward 2 1/2 Somersault 1 Twist Pike — registered 54.00 points. He bettered the score on his third dive with a mark of 63.55, which came off a Forward 3 1/2 Somersault Pike. Smith nearly matched the score in his final dive, an Inward 2 1/2 Somersault Pike, but fell just short hitting the 63.00 mark.
The Florida divers will be back in action on Friday, when senior Kahlia Warner represents the Gators individually off the Women’s 3-Meter Springboard at 10 a.m. ET.
Head Diving Coach Dale Schultz on the day:
“We had a good afternoon but Sam dove even better in the semi-finals tonight. He did a nice job throughout his sets and I was proud of him making the Top-14 to advance through the preliminary session.
“It’s a tough field we went against today and all it took for him to miss the finals on Saturday was ‘missing’ one dive, and that’s what happened.
“Making the Top-18 and advancing to tonight’s semifinals is a good sign and we’ll continue to build on it as we prepare for the rest of the season.”
Swimming news courtesy of Florida Swimming & Diving.