S. Fayette’s Zombeck and Mohawk’s Stelter Repeat as WPIAL AA Diving Champs
Friday, February 21, 2014 | 11:12 PM
At South Park High School in the WPIAL Boys AA Diving Championships, Senior Stephen Zombeck wins his second WPIAL championship in a row. He outdistanced 2nd place finisher Micah Ringer (last years silver medalist) by 51.15 points.
Last year he beat Ringer in a close contest by 10.6 points. Zombeck In the process, smashed his score of last year of 353.25. He posted a 423.55 besting last years mark by 70.30 points. Ringer beat his score by 30 points from last year taking the silver 2 straight years. In 2012 as Sophomores Zombeck finished 2nd, Ringer 5th.
Zombeck led the whole way averaging 38.50 per dive. After 8 dives he only led Ringer by 14.5 points. But two monster dives on his 10th and 11th dives put him into a comfortable lead. On dive 10 he posted a 47.65, dive 11 he scored 40.25 to run away from the field.
The other big story of the day was the South Fayette Diving team. They had 3 of the top 5 finishers including Zombeck’s twin brother Evan. Most diving coaches and officials said they had never seen that happen before. The Lions 4th diver Zombeck’s cousin finished in 10th place, just out of state qualifying. It was a banner day for the South Fayette Lions team.
The top 9 finishers move on to the PIAA State Championships March 12th 2014 at Bucknell University.
1. Stephen Zombeck South Fayette 423.55
2. Micah Ringer Beaver 372.65
3. Evan Zombeck South Fayette 345.00
4. Ben Lowrey Knoch 329.80
5. Trevor Mahoney South Fayette 326.30
6. Theo Skoric Laurel Highlands 315.90
7. Braden Carei Uniontown 279.70
8. Tyler Jorgenson Brentwood 278.65
9. Morgan Madill Indiana 277.75
For the most part, youth was served in the girls 2014 WPIAL AA Diving Championship, but Mohawk senior McKenzie Stelter held off a pair of freshman to repeat as champion at South Park High School on Friday. Stelter, the only senior to finish in the top 13, claimed victory with a cumulative score of 459.15. Stelter held nearly a 16-point edge after the preliminary round (rounds 1-5), and extended her lead to almost 19 after the semifinal round (rounds 6-8). She saved her best dives for last, though, as she recorded scores of 39.90, 46.80 and 50.6 in the final round.
Stelter far exceeded her winning total from 2013, when she scored 419.85. Taylor Hockenberry of Mars finished second with a score of 431.35, while Derry Area’s Allison Brownlee came in third with a score of 425.80.
Brownlee’s teammate, sophomore Morgan Elrick, finished 4th with a score of 390.10. Also qualifying for the PIAA Championship were Riverside’s Brittany Hart (375.30), South Park’s Tiffany Melani (363.15), West Allegheny’s Megan Wurst (339.65), New Brighton’s Madison Weaver (322.75) and Quaker Valley’s Reilly Diggins (314.05). Isabel Wroblewski narrowly missed qualifying, as she finished in 10th, less than two points behind Diggins.
Stelter, also the reigning state champion, will look to defend that title, as well, at Bucknell University next month.
More Swimming• Fox Chapel’s Zoe Skirboll competes with nation’s best swimmers at Olympic qualifiers
• North Allegheny grad Rick Mihm reaches finals in 200 IM at U.S. Olympic trials
• WPIAL products fare well at U.S. Olympic Swim Trials
• Gateway swimmer claims medals, finds motivation at state meet
• Silver lining, record finish for Hampton swimmer Donato