Diver and senior Laura Rokop has bigger goals than having a successful diving season. Although the swimming and diving teams are one team at CHS, they have been two very separated groups in past years. This season, team captains such as Rokop are trying to integrate the teams.
Rokop and the swimming team captains said they have a number of team bonding events planned and that will make sure communication between the swimming and diving team is greatly improved.
“In the past there’s been more of a division, and we’re really trying this year to bring the teams together. We’re really trying to work together to create that team unity,” Rokop said.
Despite the common belief that swimming and diving are one and the same, Rokop said the actual competitions are very different.
“I think most people have that misconception. We are a part of the same team, but they are different events. We have different meets from the swimmers, so it is two different things but one team,” Rokop said.
Head Coach Chad Trenshaw agrees that swimming and diving, although part of the same team, are very different.
“They are two different sports so choosing to dive I guess would be like someone choosing between basketball and football,” Trenshaw said. While there are fewer divers than swimmers, diving is still very competitive in the state of Indiana, thanks to the Starz Diving program, which is a program that has had divers advance all the way to the Olympics. Trenshaw said that he thinks the greater participation in swimming is a result of the greater amount of swimming opportunities and events provided for a number of kids in the community.
Tomorrow, the men’s and women’s diving teams will compete in the Warrior Diving Invitational at Whiteland High School. Trenshaw says there will be competition for all levels of diving. He said this includes those that are just starting diving and those who will compete in the State meet at the end of the season. Rokop, an experienced diver, said the meet will be challenging with some tough competition.
Sophomore and diver Christian Smith said the team will practice the dives they plan to unveil at the Warrior Diving Invitational. Additionally, he said that they will add some more difficult dives. When preparing the beginners, Trenshaw said he takes a general approach, but with the more advanced divers he looks for more specific achievements. As this meet is relatively early in the season, Trenshaw said it will be a great meet to use as a baseline for the remainder of the year.“I don’t take an approach that kids have to achieve a specific goal or score,” Trenshaw said.
Smith said he hopes to increase the difficulty of his dives and wants to try to make it to the Regional this year. Aso, he said he wants to do well and hopes this meet will foreshadow the remainder of his season.
Rokop said she agrees. She said, “As a team, we have a lot of new freshman divers, and this meet is one of the first big 11 dive meets that we have, so this will really set the tone for the more important ones to come, like conference and Sectional.”
Although Trenshaw knows this is a competitive meet, he tries to keep it in perspective for his divers. “I tell my advanced divers that it is one meet, whether you do good or bad, learn from it and apply what you learned to the next meet. I tell them that this meet or a meet does not necessarily define who they are or their ability to dive,” Trenshaw said.