March 4, 2012
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The South Carolina diving team will send five individuals to this week's NCAA Zone B Regional for a chance to earn a berth to the 2012 NCAA Championships.
A total of 82 divers will compete for 18 spots (10 women, eight men) in the NCAA Championships beginning Monday. The event runs through Wednesday at the James E. Martin Aquatics Center in Auburn, Ala. Senior Courtney Forcucci, junior Chay Malvasio and freshmen Kasey Catalfomo and Patricia Kranz will represent the Gamecock women, while freshman Cole Miller will be the lone Carolina men's diver.
"This is a very difficult meet," South Carolina diving coach Todd Sherritt said. "We will have to step it up to get in the NCAA meet. If the team performs well, we should have no problems. Everyone is prepared and we are diving extremely well. This team has performed well all year and deserves to make the NCAA."
Forcucci enters the meet as one of the favorites after coming off a successful performance at the SEC Championships. She set the SEC and school record on the three-meter springboard with a score of 392.40 to win gold. Forcucci broke the previous SEC record of 371.65, which was held by Auburn's Vennie Dantin (2010), and she broke former Gamecock Taryn Zack's school record of 389.03 (2010). Forcucci also won bronze on the one-meter springboard with a score of 324.20. In the platform competition, she scored points for the Gamecocks with a 10th-place finish. At last year's Zone Championships, Forcucci finished eighth in the three-meter competition and 17th on the one-meter board.
Catalfomo and Kranz enter their first NCAA Zone Championships. Catalfomo, who will participate on the one and three-meter boards, finished 25th on the one-meter springboard at the SEC Championships. Kranz is entered in the one and three-meter springboard competitions as well as the platform diving. She competed on both the one and three-meter boards at the SEC Championships and finished 14th and 18th, respectively. She also placed ninth in the platform competition.
Malvasio, who qualified for both the one and three-meter boards last year, will be competing only on the one-meter board this year. She finished 21st in the event at the SEC Championships. Malvasio is making her third trip to the Zone Championships.
Miller, who will compete on the one and three-meter springboards and the platform this week, reached the finals of both the three-meter springboard and platform competitions at the SEC Championships. He placed sixth on the three-meter board and fifth on the platform.
Diving is set to begin on Monday with the women's one-meter preliminaries at 11:30 a.m. followed by the finals at 1:30 p.m. The men's three-meter preliminaries are scheduled for 3:30 p.m. with the finals set for 6 p.m. Live results will be available at divemeets.com.
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