All six men’s divers were finalists in the 1-meter event at the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships on Thursday.
"The divers did outstanding today and I am very proud of how they bonded as a team and supported each other," BYU head diving coach Tyce Routson said. "I am very proud of Eric Muir, who, as a freshman, won his first title on the 1-meter. It was incredible to have every member of the men’s team ending in the finals today. Trayten Speth and Ryan Evans finally got their NCAA zone qualifying score today, so all six members of the men’s team will be able to compete in the NCAA zone diving event in the near future.”
To compete in the NCAA Zone Diving Championships, a diver must achieve a listed score in at least one of the three diving events. For males, the qualifying scores are 300 points in the 1-meter and platform diving and 320 points in the 3-meter. Once a diver has hit one of these scores, they are eligible to compete in all three events at the Championships.
Eric Muir sealed his first championship victory in the 1-meter by performing his all-time best and receiving a score of 347.90. He was followed in second place by senior Kevin Dreesen, who ended with a total of 337.80.
Fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth places were also claimed by the BYU men’s team in the following order: Matt Denkers (320.00), Speth (316.55), Evans (314.15) and Jordan Tuckfield (279.35).
“We also had Morgan Mellow, who improved her best score by 20 points, and senior Keyka Leinhard make it to the finals today," Routson said. "I am proud of the men’s and women’s teams, for stepping it up and competing hard and getting the top spots.”
Morgan Mellow led the BYU women’s dive team with a score of 264.00, which placed her in second overall. Mellow was just one point short of qualifying for her NCAA zone cut in the 1-meter. Keyka (Erica) Lienhard also claimed a finalist position in eighth, with a total score of 183.80.
“We had a great evening with a lot of best times and a lot of fast swimming,” BYU head swim coach John Brooks said. “We did a great job of regrouping and facing our fears from yesterday. Our divers did an amazing job, with all six men’s divers receiving NCAA zone cuts. Our swimmers did great as well and we had a lot of best times and hopefully we can just build off that."
Junior Preston Jenkins broke his personal and school record in the 200 individual medley. He qualified in the prelims in third place with a time of 1:47.57 and improved his final time to 1:46.58 to seal a spot in fourth place. Jenkins’ previous all-time school record was 1:46.76.
Payton Sorenson claimed second place in the 50 freestyle, registering a time of 19.85.Comment on this story
The men’s 200 freestyle relay team, consisting of Sorenson, Jenkins, Roger Woods and Kent Follows, tied the University of Hawai’i for a second-place finish. They completed the event in 1:20.59.
Senior Riley Merrill swam the 200 individual medley in 2:02.86, which placed her among the finalists in fifth place.
The MPSF Championships continue Friday, with preliminaries beginning at 10 a.m. PST, followed by event finals at 6 p.m. Diving begins at 11 a.m., at the Rose Bowl Aquatic Center in Pasadena, California. Fans can follow the meet through the live stream or live results page. Complete results will be posted on BYU's website at the conclusion of the day’s events.
Courtney Lovelace is a current student at Brigham Young University who works in sports communications. She may be contacted by using her email at email@example.com.