Five Hokies qualify for NCAAs on day two of Diving Zones

Virginia Tech Diving

PISCATAWAY, N.J. – Day two of NCAA Diving Zone A Championships proved to be solid for the Virginia Tech divers as five Hokies qualified for NCAA Championships on Tuesday at the Rutgers Aquatic Center.

“It was a very good day for us,” said diving coach Ron Piemonte. “We came here to get NCAA spots and we did just that today.”

On the men’s side, three Hokies earned automatic bids in the 1-meter event with junior Ben Schiesl leading the way, finishing second with a score of 742.60. Senior Thomas Shinholser came in fifth (640.65) while fellow senior Jack Gigliotti nabbed the final automatic bid spot, finishing sixth with a score of 639.15.

“For Ben to get second, TJ fifth and Jack sixth is a great accomplishment for all three to earn the automatic bids. Jack had to nail his last dive to finish sixth and he did it, so it was a great day for him. Ben was fantastic and TJ was really solid.”

With earning the automatic spot today, Shinholser will also qualify for the men’s 3-meter after placing 12th with 623.30 in yesterday’s event. Schiesl also had an automatic qualifier yesterday, placing fifth in the 3-meter (725.55).

In addition, Eduardo and Mauro Castro-Silva advanced out of the preliminaries. Eduardo came in 12th overall in 597.0 while Mauro finished 15th with a score of 582.70.

On the women’s side, Ashley Buchter claimed sixth in the women’s 3-meter to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Championships. She finished with a score of 573.30.

“Ashley was awesome today, I think she may have missed one dive today out of her 12. I am so proud of the way she performed and happy she earned one of the automatic spots.”

Ashlynn Peters also qualified for NCAAs in the women’s 3-meter, finishing ninth today with a score of 566.15. She earned an automatic spot yesterday in the 1-meter event after placing second. Freshman Regan Westwood also advanced out of the preliminaries, finishing 14th overall with a score of 543.70.

“Ashlynn was a little shakey today, but she got her top-12 finish to qualify for NCAAs after earning the automatic spot yesterday. And I am very proud of Regan to make the finals on both one and three meter. She competed well as a freshman and gives me a good feeling for her future as a Hokie. It’s very easy for a freshman to come into this meet and be overwhelmed, but she came in calm and has competed well for us.”

“Today was a good day, and I am very proud of all the kids. They all did a nice job. Going into tomorrow, I’m hoping we continue to be strong on platform as we have always been in the past.”

The Hokies will wrap up NCAA Diving Zones on the platform event. Events are currently slated to begin at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, March 7, but inclement weather is in the forecast for Piscataway, New Jersey and may alter the schedule.

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