Making school history
BLOOMSBURG - Shamokin Area senior Ciana Rollman became the first Indian girl ever to win a District Four diving championship when she accomplished the feat Saturday , topping a field of 14 entrants at Bloomsburg University. Rollman finished second last season and will make her second straight trip to the PIAA Swimming and Diving Championships March 13-14 at Bucknell University.
Rollman joined Jason Golumbfskie as the only Shamokin divers to win district titles. Golumbfskie won in 1997 and finished fifth in the state that year. Not only that, but her total score of 368.60 points broke her own school record and was higher than the top boys score of 364.55 by Sayre's Sam Shoemake. Rollman's teammate, Mariah Bielski, finished 13th.
Sophomore Samantha Carpenter will also make a return trip to the state meet, after finishing second in the 100-yard breaststroke at the district meet last weekend.
Carpenter won the event as a freshman last year but was hampered by a recurrent shoulder injury this year. Central Columbia senior Katie Saloky won the event in 1:06.73. Carpenter's time was 1:09.13.
Rollman finished 13th at the state meet in 2012 and is confident she can win a medal by placing in the top eight this year.
"Right now I'm seeded 10th and I plan to medal," said Rollman, who was also a member of the Indians' volleyball team. "It's my senior year and my last year. I didn't want to take second again (at districts) and my adrenaline was really going."
Shamokin diving coach Rich Kashnoski said Rollman jumped into the lead by nailing a tough dive, a back somersault with a one-and-a-half twist, which had a degree of difficult of 2.3.
"That was her best score of the day and that's when she climbed into the lead and went up by 42.55 points," Kashnoski said. Rollman eventually beat runnerup Reagan Radel of Bloomsburg, who also advanced to the state meet, by 34.05 points. Radel nipped third-polace finisher Graycie Juckes of Central Columbia by .20 for the second state spot.
The latter are the kind of differences that make or break medalists at the state meet, Rollman said.
"I learned that there is a lot of great competition around the state," Rollman said. "In districts we're close but at states you're separated by decimal points."
Rollman said she likes the feeling of individual accomplishment she gets from diving.
"You're by yourself out there and all eyes are on you," she said. "It's the best feeling to come out of the water and see the sixes and sevens (judges' scores)."
Or an 8½, which she received on her top dive Saturday.
"One of the judges said that divers stand up in front of everyone and make their mistakes public," said Kashnoski. "I thought that was a great quote."
Although Rollman nailed a hard dive Saturday, she said one of her strengths is that she has mastered the easier dives.
"I think I've perfected the easier ones," she said.
Kashnoski said diving judges look for height on the dive, form and a lack of splash entering the water.
"You don't see much splashing at states," he said.
Carpenter said her training was hurt this year because of her injury.
"I was only doing about 3,700 yards (roughly two miles) of swimming a day in practice," she said. "Last year I was up around 6,700 yards. I missed about half the season."
Carpenter said she's the type of swimmer who needs as much yardage in practice as she can get.
"It depends on the type of body a person has," she said.
Carpenter, who also runs cross country and track, was seeded seventh at last year's state meet in the event, but her shoulder kicked up and she finished a disappointing 17th in her preliminary and missed advancing by one place with a time of 1:09.64.
Still, she was the first Shamokin female swimmer to reach the state meet, and has now done it twice.
"I'm excited," Carpenter said.
District Four Diving Championships
Diver, school Points
1. Ciana Rollman, Shamokin 368.60
2. Reagan Radel, Bloomsburg 334.55
3. Graycie Juckes, Central 334.35
4. Shannon Laubach, Bloomsburg 329.45
5. Sarah Slocum, Athens 295.65
6. Abby Meredick, Danville 288.35
7, Claire Martin, Lewisburg 261.75
8. Courtney Bruer, Sayre 259.65
9T. Madeline Padner, Central 257.65
Shania Rinderle, Meadowbrook 257.65
11. Caroline Vana, Towanda 211.60
12, Chloe Auman, Lewisburg 201.90
13. Mariah Bielski, Shamokin 168.25
14. Ellen Penn, Lewisburg 167.75
Diver, school Points
1. Sam Shoemake, Sayre 364.55
2. Sam Juckes, Central 351.45
3. Joe Gentilucci, Danville 351.00
4. Nick Kapp, Danville 326.25
5. Kyle Ehmann, Lewisburg 247.55
6. Tyler Basse, Towanda 240.95
7. Josh Morgan, Towanda 209.20