March 9, 2012
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IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa senior Veronica Rydze is making a return trip to the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships. Rydze qualified after finishing fifth in the women’s three-meter springboard at the NCAA Zone D Diving Championships on Friday evening at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center pool.
The Iowa City, Iowa, native tallied a fifth finish in the 39-diver competition with a total of 614.90 points. Rydze was in ninth place following the preliminaries, posting a six-dive total of 291.50. In the finals, she finished with a total of 323.40 to move up the leaderboard and advance to the NCAA Championships for the second straight season.
“She didn’t miss a dive, and she was 10-12-14 points behind,” said UI diving coach Bob Rydze, Veronica’s father. “It was a heck of a performance.”
Freshman Abby Grilli joined Rydze in advancing to the final, finishing 18th with a total of 540.95. Sophomore Joelle Christy dove in the prelims, posting a six-dive total of 225.30 to place 34th.
“As a walk-on, redshirt freshman to make it to the finals in this meet is unbelievable,” said Rydze of Grilli. “She’s got a great future. Deidre Freeman, my daughter (Veronica Rydze)… there are a lot of All-Americans I’ve had and in their first year, they never made the finals in this meet.”
Both Iowa men’s divers advanced to the final of the 1-meter springboard event. Sophomore Osvel Molina finished 10th with a total of 634.15, while sophomore Arsen Sarkisian was 18th with a score of 539.15.
The championships conclude Saturday. Women’s platform competition is set to begin at 11 a.m. followed by the men’s platform at 2 p.m.