Ringgold’s Vogt, CWNC’s Maziarz win WPIAL Class AA diving titles

Friday, February 23, 2018 | 7:36 PM

Heading into the final dive of the WPIAL Class AA girls diving championship Friday afternoon, the scores were still too tight to determine a favorite.

After 10 dives, less then five points separated Ringgold's Anna Vogt, Blackhawk's Jamie Elia and Elizabeth Forward's Jordan Vasko.

Vogt, a junior, notched a 28.75 for her last dive. After that, the Rams' diver said she couldn't watch the rest.

“To be honest, I thought I was done for. I didn't even know how much I scored on my last dive. I just knew it was a little low,” Vogt said. “I was thinking about how I just wasn't feeling it. I didn't watch their dives either, I just thought that I already did all I could do.”

Whenever Vogt did decide to look, she saw her final score was enough to hold down first place, crowning her the 2018 WPIAL Class AA diving champ at South Park High School.

Her mark of 354.70 edge out Vasko (352.75) and Elia (325.55).

“It feels pretty great. Everybody was telling me throughout the season, all the coaches saying, ‘You're going to win it, it's going to be fine,' ” Vogt said.

“But once it got here, it was like, ‘Am I really going to win?' ”

The top six finishers qualified for the PIAA Class AA championship, including Knoch's Ary Napora (302.40) and Kristen Jerich (301.35) and Indiana's Becky Shellenbarger (292.80).

Meanwhile, on the boys side, Cardinal Wuerl North Catholic's Kyle Maziarz didn't compete in the WPIAL Class AA boys diving championship last season. This year, however, the sophomore took home the gold.

In his first year of varsity diving, Maziarz held off stern competition, led by Laurel Highlands' John Ek, and claimed first place with a score of 427.00.

“It's a lot to process, I've been nervous for like three days. After the first round, I was in third place, and I was thinking that my dives are going to get harder now so I'll have to bring it even more,” Maziarz said. “Now that we're done though, I feel great.”

The Trojans' newcomer had been practicing diving with his club team before this season began. He said he felt comfortable on the boards this year, but that a championship wasn't necessarily one of his expectations.

“Not until the past couple of weeks, when I noticed I was seeded second for the championships,” Maziarz said. “I knew Andrew Cestra was seeded first, and I remembered our meet against Beaver, me and him were so close in scores. After that, I figured I had a shot, but I didn't know what his list was going to be. It all worked out, though.”

Maziarz was followed by Ek (417.10), and then Beaver's Andrew Cestra (380.95). Fourth place was awarded to Elizabeth Forward's Gavin Guern (353.35), who was followed by Quaker Valley's Simon Iwanonkiw (315.35) and South Park's Cole O'Conner (298.15). The top six finishers for the boys also advanced to states.

The PIAA Class AA boys diving championship will be held at 12:45 p.m. March 16, while the girls title will be settled at the same time March 17. Both championship meets will take place at Kinney Natatorium at Bucknell.

The WPIAL Class AAA diving championships will be contested Saturday at North Allegheny. The boys meet begins at 10 a.m., and the girls will start at 2:30.

Kevin Lohman is a freelance writer.

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