State Diving: Warriors Gabrielson advances to state finals
Brainerd's Wyatt Gabrielson competed in the Class 2A State Diving Prelims Thursday, March 2.
MINNEAPOLIS — Wyatt Gabrielson is headed to Saturday’s Class 2A State Swimming and Diving Finals.
The Brainerd Warriors senior is sitting in 12th place following the prelims and semifinal rounds of the Class 2A diving prelims Thursday, March 2, at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center.
Gabrielson collected 244.5 points through his first eight dives. He’ll get three more dives during Saturday’s finals to maintain or move up in the standings.
“Wyatt and (diving coach Owen) Trout did a great job of lining up which dives to do first and he dove very well,” Brainerd head coach John Zemke said. “His first dive was maybe not a dive that he had hoped for as far as scores were concerned, but his next seven were very solid. He had a very good day and we’re excited he’ll be diving on Saturday.”
Rosemount’s Lucas Gerten leads the diving competition with 314.1 points. Braden Lemke of St. Cloud, who won the Section 8-2A title, is second with 304.6 points. Elk River’s Austin Kanto is ninth with 261.2 points and Sartell’s David Binsfeld is 11th with 250.2 points as all four Section 8 divers advanced to the finals.
Zemke said Trout and Gabrielson front-loaded the dive list to put Gabrielson's higher-scoring dives first among his 11 total dives. But there’s still room to move up on Saturday.
“He can definitely move up a few spots, but it’s going to be difficult as far as moving up to the top eight, Zemke said. “That would be difficult, but he’s diving well and we’re excited to have him diving on Saturday.”
Gabrielson was sitting 12th after the five-dive prelims. He posted 165 points. Gerten led after the prelims with 213.25 points. Lemke was third with 192.8 points. Prior Lake’s Blake Wallen was second with 197.10 points.
The top 20 divers advance through prelims into the semifinal round. After semifinals, the top 16 advance to Saturday's finals.
“It does sometimes seem to go that way, in which a diver usually does really well the first time they’re down at state,” Zemke said. “So much depends on the kid. I think it really helped that Wyatt was on this board back in January for the state True Team meet. That was a positive. He’s 18. He’s a senior. He’s a mature and smart kid and he put it together well.
“He had a big smile on his face today.”
The Class 2A state record is still held by Brainerd’s Shaun Kennedy, who won the diving title in 2003 with 526.2 points.
Semifinals: 1-Lucas Gerten (Rosemount) 314.1, 2-Braden Lemke (St. Cloud) 304.6, Blake Wallen (Prior Lake) 301, 4-Henry Ross (Wayzata) 283.2, 5-Alex Oestreich (Eden Prairie) 274, 6-Brian Gilbertson (Chanhassen) 268.15, 7-Owen Kipp (Eagan) 265.8, 8-Trey Maroney (Minnetonka) 262.15, 9-Austin Kantor (Elk River) 261.2, 10-Sebastian Santiago (Spring Lake Park) 257.5, 11-David Binsfeld (Sartell) 250.2, 12-Wyatt Gabrielson (Brainerd) 244.5, 13-Stone Larson (Eagan) 242, 14-Silas Wagstaff (Rochester Century) 241.95, 15-Porter Woodson (Lakeville South) 241.65, 16-Will Francis (Robbinsdale Armstrong) 239.9
Next: Class 2A State Swimming and Diving Finals at University of Minnesota Aquatic Center 6 p.m. Saturday, March 4.