Saunders takes fourth in district
The applause from the Central Bucks West cheering section reached a crescendo when oachel Saunders nailed her reverse one DnG D KDOI IRU KHU finDO GiYH of Saturday afternoon.
The collection of sevens that she earned from the judges pushed her total to 459.50 and locked up a fourth-place finiVK in WKH DiVWUiFW 2nH CODVV AAA competition at Upper Dublin High School.
“That was my favorite dive too so it was good to HnG Rn WKDW,” 6DunGHUV VDiG.
Now, the real fun begins for Saunders, who will be making her fourth trip to the state championships in three weeks at Bucknell University. Saunders led a group of four local divers who advanced out of districts, as North Penn’s Marie vacopino (sixth) and Madison Tanis (ninth), as well as Wissahickon’s Megan Berardelli (seventh), all had solid afternoons up on the board before a spirited, near-capacity crowd at the Upper Dublin Natatorium.
“I’m really excited. It’s alwDyV D JRRG WiPH,” 6DunGHUV said of states. “I’m not that disappointed (with fourth a year after placing second) because I’m still going to states. States is more exciting so I just wanted to make it. The competition was reDOOy KDUG WKiV yHDU.”
Upper Dublin’s Corey Johnson set a pool record with a score of 474.20 to earn the gold medal and also the ooy Moose Award, given to the diver with the highest score in the competition. Upper Moreland’s Sydney Szopo had the top score in Class AA with a 377.85.
Class AAA defending champion Carolyn Howard took home the silver medal after scoring a 473.85, followed by Haverford’s Alli Butera, who earned the bronze with a 467.85.
“, GiGn’W GiYH Py EHVW,” said Saunders, who also SODFHG fiIWK DV D IUHVKPDn and seventh as a sophomore at the event. “I only felt some dives were good but it’s all good. I’ll work hard EHWwHHn nRw DnG VWDWHV.”
vacopino, a freshman, had been working hard on a new dive, her double twist one and a half, and she got to show it off at districts on Saturday. It helped her compile a 435.35, good for sixth place and a trip to the big meet.
“I’m overwhelmed but excitHG WR JR,” VKH VDiG wiWK D VPiOH after receiving her medal.