U.S. wins silver, bronze on day six at FINA Junior Worlds

by USA Diving

Molly Gray (Stanford Diving) won the girls’ 14-15 1-meter silver medal and Joshua Hedberg (The Indiana International School of Diving) earned bronze in the 14-15 boys’ platform contest Friday at the FINA World Junior Diving Championships in Montreal.

The U.S. has now won nine medals with two days of competition remaining. Hedberg’s medal was his third this week, while Gray’s silver was her first.

Gray picked up the 1-meter silver with 323.90 points. In third after the first round in the finals, Gray scored 48.10 points on a front 2 ½ pike to move into second place and then followed up with 52 points on her reverse 1 ½ with 1 ½ twists in the last round. Canada’s Alexa Fung scored 333.20 points for gold, and Italy’s Giorgia De Sanctis took bronze at 317.25.

USA’s Isabel Baley (COM Aquatics) also advanced to the 1-meter final and finished eighth with 300.75 points. She was in 11th place with one round to go and scored 55.20 points on her final dive – an inward 1 ½ pike – to move up to eighth in the final standings.

Hedberg took the platform bronze with 438.80 points, highlighted by an inward 3 ½ tuck that scored 73.80 and an armstand double back somersault with 2 ½ twists that earned 77.40 points.  It was Hedberg’s first individual medal of the championships and third overall this week. He was part of the U.S. team that won the mixed team event gold, and he also paired with Tyler Wills for a bronze in the boys’ synchronized platform event.

Ukraine’s Kirill Boliukh won the platform gold with 476.90 points, and Great Britain’s Jorden Fisher-Eames scored 442.90 for silver.  USA’s Nathaniel Grannis (Dominion Dive Club) finished 23rd with 293.10 points in the platform in the preliminaries.

Max Fowler (Montgomery Dive Club) and Nick Harris (University of Texas) represented the United States in the boys’ synchronized 3-meter event and finished fourth with 287.61 points. In seventh place with one round remaining, they finished strong when they scored 73.44 points on their last dive – a front 2 ½ with two twists that nearly put them on the podium. The U.S. team was just 2.16 points shy of the bronze medal score posted by Great Britain’s Leon Baker and Hugo Thomas. Italy’s Stefano Bilotti and Matteo Santoro scored 299.25 for gold, with Croatia’s Matej Nevescanin and David Ledinski winning silver at 296.25.

Competition at the FINA World Junior Championships continues Saturday with Bayleigh Cranford and Avery Worobel diving in the 16-18 girls’ platform event. Saturday also marks the start of the 2022 Junior International High Diving Championships held in conjunction with the FINA World Junior Diving Championships. Zara Karimi, Maya Kelly, Sydney Kowalski and Gabby Mauder will compete in the girls’ high diving events, and Thomas Matheis and Ben Mattera will dive in the boys’ high diving events.