Rowan men’s diver Sean Piacente qualifies for National Championships

Rowan senior diver Sean Piacente dives during a meet against TCNJ earlier this year. -Photo courtesy of Sports Information

The Rowan University diving team had a strong outing at the NCAA Northeast/South Regional tournament this past weekend in Ithaca, NY.

Competing for the women’s team was sophomore Corinne Finkbinder and freshman Klaudia Rzotkiewicz. Finkbinder finished 22nd with 338.75 points and Rzotkiewicz followed in 23rd with 335.05 after 11 dives. This was both their first appearance at the NCAA regional tournament.

Finkbinder’s best dive came in the seventh round, where she tallied 40.60 points with a two-and-a-half somersault tuck. She also scored a 36.00 in the sixth round and a 35.00 in the 10th.

“Corinne had a great three-meter meet.” coach Justin Eakins said. 

For Rzotkiewicz, her top score came on a back one-and-a-half somersault half-twist for 37.00 points. Some of her other best scores were a 35.00 point performance on her seventh dive and a score of 31.50 on her final dive of the day. Both of these underclassmen have a lot of potential for coach Eakins.

“I think it helps tremendously, considering 66.7 percent of the teams from our women’s side qualified for regionals,” Eakins said. “And, shows that the Rowan women’s diving team has a very bright future.”

On the men’s side of the event, Rowan was lead by senior Sean Piacente and sophomore  Chad Shire. This is the second-straight appearance for Piacente at the regional championship and the first for Shire. Mike Grubb had qualified for the regional tournament, but was unable to compete due to injury.

After 11 dives at this past weekend’s NCAA Diving Regional, Rowan men’s swimming senior diver Sean Piacente finished with a total score of 439.60 points. Piacente’s scores propelled him to a bid at the NCAA Division III Championships on Wednesday-Saturday, March 21-24 in Indianapolis, IN. He was the third of six divers to have a qualifying score for the national championships. 

“I thought Sean’s performance was great,” Eakins said. “I thought we finally were at the peak of where we needed to be at the end of the season.” 

Piacente’s top dive came in the three-meter event, where he scored a 61.50 with an inward two-and-a-half somersault pike in the sixth round. His top dive in the one-meter event was a forward two-and-a-half somersault pike, which he was earned 50.70 points for in the eighth round.

Shire finished the tournament 12th overall with 420.50 points. His highest score was 51.80 in the seventh round. Shire completed a forward three-and-a-half somersault tuck. 

It’s not hard to see that Rowan diving is strung together by championship-caliber leadership and a strong core of young divers, as the team has high aspirations for next season. 

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