Casareto qualifies for NCAAs at Zone C Meet
Daniel O'Boyle | Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Senior diver Allison Casareto qualified for the 1-meter and 3-meter boards at the NCAA Championship during the NCAA Zone C meet in Columbus, Ohio, on Thursday and Friday.
Casareto earned an eighth-place finish on the 3-meter board Thursday with a score of 613.70. With new rules in place for this year, she needed a top-12 finish on the 1-meter board to qualify, which she achieved by finishing 12th.
Junior Lindsey Streepey narrowly missed out on qualification for both the platform dive and the 3-meter dive. She finished ninth in the platform, seven points and one place away from qualifying, despite the fact she only competed on the platform twice this year and Rolfs Aquatic Center does not have a platform board on which she could practice. She finished 10th in the 3-meter dive with a score of 602.00 and also finished 16th in the 1-meter event.
Junior Emma Gaboury also competed in the platform dive, finishing 19th, as well as finishing 13th in the 3-meter and 21st in the 1-meter. Freshman Annie Crea finished 31st in the 1-meter and 38th in the 3-meter.
Irish diving coach Caiming Xie said the high-pressure format of the competition made the meet difficult for his team.
“The hardest thing about NCAA zone diving is that … divers only get one meet to qualify for the national championship,” Caiming said. “It’s not like swimming, where you can qualify at any meet during the season.”
However, Caiming said his team, especially Casareto, confronted the situation exceptionally well.
“Since it’s zone meets and only one can qualify for nationals, that gives divers a lot of pressure,” Caiming said. “However, Notre Dame divers handled the pressure very well.
“There were some very good performances during both the preliminary and final rounds. Allison especially did a great job to qualify for nationals. They all enjoyed the meet and showed confidence on their dives.”
Casareto told UND.com qualifying for the NCAA Championships has been a highlight of her career at Notre Dame.
“Being able to compete at NCAAs is something I’m sure any athlete dreams of doing,” Casareto said. “I have always had an immense amount of respect for those who compete at this particular level, and to be able to qualify during the final season of my career is the ultimate high note for me personally.”
Casareto is the first member of the Irish diving team to qualify for nationals since Jenny Chiang in 2013.
Casareto, along with senior swimmer Emma Reaney, will compete at the NCAA Championships this week in Greensboro, North Carolina, starting Thursday and finishing Sunday.