Divers head to Missouri for one final competition


Emily Blobaum/Iowa State Daily

Iowa State senior Becky Stochl dives during the meet against West Virginia Jan. 21. 

Rachel Given

As the winter sports seasons wind down, the Iowa State dive team’s season is still going strong with one major competition left — NCAA Zones.

Two of Iowa State’s senior divers, Julie Dickinson and Becky Stochl, are heading to Columbia, Missouri, for three days, facing some tough competition. Knowing what to expect in a pool is half the battle, and the Cyclones have already competed in Mizzou’s facility earlier this season.

“Mizzou is a very bright pool, which is nice,” Dickinson said. “It’s just easier to see and spot when it’s bright out.”

Dickinson also said the diving boards are new at Mizzou.

The competition at the Mizzou Invite earlier this season also gave some insight into the competition for Zones and how it’s set up. 

Head dive coach Jeff Warrick said the competition is revved up for Zones.

“It’s Big 12s times five,” Warrick said. “It’s going to be very competitive. We have teams from Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, LSU, the Texas schools. It’s gonna be tough.”

Seeing unfamiliar, non-conference faces also helps.

“I get super stressed [at Big 12s] just because I’ve dove against those girls multiple times,” Stochl said. “I know how good they are. I know I could be right up there with them, so it stresses me out more because of that.”

Zones is a little different for Stochl. She knows she isn’t tabbed as a top diver at the compeittion, making her less concerned with how she does, which she thinks will help her do better.

“I’m not really a competitive person,” Stochl said. “So I do better when I don’t feel like I don’t have to be competitive.”

Dickinson knows her and her teammates’ capabilities, though.

“Becky and I did pretty well at Mizzou,” Dickinson said. “So I think we can be right up there, but it is going to be more difficult because some of the best divers in the country are going to be at Zones.”

More than 40 divers compete in six dives on each board in prelims, but only seven move on to nationals.

Because the conference championship was just last week, the diving duo hasn’t had much time to practice but has been focusing on a few things this week.

“Instead of drastically changing anything, we’re just trying to be more consistent,” Dickinson said. “Just to go into Zones and be comfortable with what we’re doing.”

While the competition is for 1-meter, 3-meter and platform boards, the Cyclones will only compete on the 1-meter and 3-meter planks.