INDIANAPOLIS -- Redemption.
In his first trip back to the same pool where he lost out on a chance to represent the United States at last year’s Olympics, University of Miami redshirt freshman diver David Dinsmore won the NCAA national championship in the men’s 10-meter platform at the 2017 NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships at the IU Natatorium Saturday night.
Competing in his first NCAA Championships after redshirting his freshman year, Dinsmore outdueled Purdue sophomore and 2016 U.S. Olympian Steele Johnson, finishing with 528.20 points to Johnson’s 506.05.
“It was a legendary night for the Hurricanes. We’ve had a lot of great success over the years, but this ranks right up there with the guys he was up against, and in this pool, this is where the Olympic trials were,” head diving coach Randy Ableman said. “He got beat out by two points by Steele for a spot on the Olympic team...we’ve been talking about it and he knew he had to be bring his ‘A’ game tonight. There was no room for error. He brought it.”
The New Albany, Ohio native became the 13th diver from the University of Miami to win a national championship under Ableman, now in his 28th year at the helm of the program.
Dinsmore topped the field with 528.20 points, scoring 81 points or higher on all six of his dives. He clinched the title with 95.40 points on his final dive, a back 2 ½ with 2 ½ twists. Purdue’s Johnson scored 506.05 points for second after winning 1-meter and 3-meter titles earlier in the week.
“I believe this is his highest score he has ever achieved,” Ableman said. “It took all of that to become a national champion. That makes all the sweeter to be pushed like that and to have that going on in this pool, and to be in that position again and to come through this time, it meant a lot to both of us.”
Dinsmore, who won the 10-meter title at the 2016 USA Diving Winter National Championships, competed only on platform at the NCAA Championships. Teammate Briadam Herrera added two All-America honors to his personal resume this week, finishing fifth in the 1-meter and as the national runner-up in the 3-meter.
The national championship is already the second won by a Hurricane in 2017; women's track student-athlete Shakima Wimbley won the 400m earlier in March. It's the first time two Hurricanes have won a national championship in different sports in the same year since Britany Viola (women's diving, platform) and Ti'erra Brown (women's track, 400m hurdles)
Dinsmore and Johnson were the only divers to surpass 500 points in the finals. Ohio State’s Zhipeng Zeng was third at 478.25 points, followed by Brandon Loshiavo (Purdue), Tyler Henschel (Texas A&M), Dashiell Enos (USC), Matt Barnard (Minnesota) and Ted Miclau (Stanford).
“It’s a super tough field out there right now, across the NCAA landscape,” Ableman said. “Everybody is coming back next year. None of the top guys were seniors this year, and there’s a lot of Olympic experience and international experience. It’s just going to keep ramping up.
“Personally, I feel good in that my guys are getting better. Briadam has caught up with these guys in the last year, and I think he’s going to be a player for the next Olympic team, and that’s my goal for him. We’re young, but so are the other top divers and everybody is going to be working their butts off to win a title next year.”