Dive team strives for new heights in district, regional competitions


Emma Gnidziejko

Sophomore Parker Burton dives in last year’s 5A state competition. The team began in the 2017-2018 school year. “Our divers are a young group,” coach Sarah Milne said. “We have three sophomores and three freshmen on our dive team.”

Grace Williamson, Reporter

The dive team competed in the regional meet Jan. 31. Sophomores Parker Burton and Kalee Morgan placed fifth and eighth.

The divers swept district, placing first, third, fourth and fifth, but did not place high enough in regionals to advance to state.

“There were about 15 girls and 20 guys that we competed against,” Burton said. “It’s the top three that go to state, and unfortunately none of us made it.”

The competition took place in Lewisville, Texas, at the Westside Natatorium.

“This was our first year in 6A,” coach Sarah Milne said. “The competition this year was a lot tougher and more competitive than what we’ve seen in past years whenever we were in the 5A level.”

The 6A classification is for schools with a student body exceeding 2,100 students.

“I knew it was going to be hard competition,” Burton said. “Last year, I went to state in 5A. The competition was a lot easier. I remember looking – because I knew Prosper was going to be 6A next year – at the sheet of all the 6A people from that year, and all of them had scores 100 or more higher than me.”

The team’s debut is still recent as they started competing in the 2017-2018 school year.

“This is the first year that dive has actually been offered during the school day,” Milne said. “Previously, diving practices had been outside of the school day.”

Freshman Haley Fein was a gymnast for 11 years before joining the team.

“I didn’t really know what to expect walking in, and I didn’t know if people on the team were going to be nice or not,” freshman Haley Fein said. “I came in and everyone was so nice. It was a new experience for me, and it was definitely different from gymnastics, but I love it.”

They have more than doubled in teammates compared to last year and will face more growth in years to come.

“I’ve seen the team grow physically, because last year we only had two people, and this year we now have six people,” Burton said. “We’ve grown over time because we’ve been able to do new dives, getting better scores every meet and being more consistent.”

Burton said the team has practice every day, except for Fridays. They currently practice in The Colony natatorium but will move to the Prosper natatorium when it opens for the next school year.

“I’m definitely looking forward to the natatorium opening because we won’t have an hour commute every day,” Fein said. “We’ll have more practice time, more equipment, hopefully getting better and scoring high, so we can make it to state next year.”

Burton said they will finally have better equipment like a trampoline and harnesses. This equipment will contribute to safety and provide confidence for divers with difficult dives.

“My goal was to make it to regions, which for myself, only doing diving for five months, was a pretty big accomplishment,” Fein said. “I knew the competition was going to be really hard,  and I just tried my best.”

According to Milne, despite enduring training obstacles, the team advanced their skills this year.

“It’s so exciting to see the growth of this program,” Milne said. “In addition to that, we had two divers come in that had never dove before, and they’ve all just worked really hard all season and just progressed.”