Divers set focus on Zone Championships

Nate Ryan

The ISU diving team will be sending four of its divers to the NCAA Zone Diving Championships March 11-13. 

“We saw a lot of good things at the Big 12 Championships, but I think we can definitely do better,” said Cyclones diving coach Jeff Warrick. 

The divers will return to Austin, Texas, just two weeks after competing at the Big 12 Championships in the same pool. 

“That’s going to be big for us,” Warrick said. “We already know what it’s going to be like.”

This will be senior Abby Christensen’s second time at the Zone Championships. 

“I just want to have fun,” Christensen said. “I’m excited to have four of my teammates with me.”

Warrick said Christensen will need to be relaxed to get results.

“If she’s relaxed and she’s having fun, then she’s going to dive well,” Warrick said. “She’s experienced and really had a good 3-meter dive last year.” 

Junior Sarah Nelson will be looking to continue a successful year on the diving boards with her first trip to the Zone Championships.

Warrick knows Nelson’s capabilities and is expecting personal bests out of Nelson.

“It’s expecting a lot, but this is the time we’re supposed to be doing it,” Warrick said. 

Nelson’s focus in practice still lies with consistency.

“It’s something you want to strive for,” Nelson said. “It’s really important, especially at the end of the season.”

Junior diver Jenn Botsch will also be experiencing this meet for the first time in her career. 

“I really just want to enjoy it,” Botsch said. “I want to see what’s out there for next year so I can be more prepared in the future.”

Warrick would like to see Botsch get back to the level she was at when she qualified for Zones in the first meet of the season.

Junior Lauren Naeve will be returning to the diving boards from injury for the Cyclones for the first time since early December.

“I’m just excited to be able to compete again,” Naeve said. “I’m not expecting anything phenomenal, but to just get comfortable again.”

With just a week’s worth of practice, Warrick said she thinks she can step up and compete. 

“She’s had a great week of practice,” Warrick said. “I think she can surprise some people with how well she does for just having a week back.”