Diving into competition

MCHS continues to pool state qualifiers

John Shipley knows what it's like to miss out.

Last year the junior Moffat County High School diver missed state by five points when in the last meet of the season he pulled a zero on one of his dives.

The brush with qualification last year became a driving force for Shipley this year. The junior pushed himself in perfecting harder dives, which paid off Friday and Saturday when he qualified for state.

The junior's dives also helped place the Bulldogs in first in the two home meets.

"I've just been trying harder dives all year," Shipley said. "The zero that I got last year has really made me pull things together this year."

For a diver to qualify for state he must not only hit qualification once but twice in the regular season's six-dive meets. They can also qualify in one meet if it is an 11-dive championship format, such as at the regional tournament.

Shipley hit qualifications on both days ensuring his trip to Fort Collins. Although it was Shipley's weekend to shine, a fellow diver eclipsed him in points, at least one of the days.

Junior Jerry Davis broke Moffat County's points record for diving Friday when in his six dives he accumulated 213 points. The old high school record stood at 210 points.

Davis did not qualify for state the following day because he was not at the meet. The junior had to travel for band on Saturday, delaying his early entry to state for one more week.

"Both of our divers had a great weekend," coach Jim Vorhies said.

Overall the Bulldogs are sending 11 swimmers to state at the end of the season, which nearly doubles last year's numbers. MCHS sent six athletes last year.

No swimming event qualified in the weekend's worth of home meets but Vorhies expects this to all change as the boy's enter the last meet of the season Saturday at home verses Delta and during next weekend's Western Slope Championships at Orchard Mesa.

"We'll start working the boy's taper here pretty soon," Vorhies said.

"When we do that is when I expect to start to see the individual qualifications."

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