Seven Team USA divers advance to FINA Diving World Cup finals

by USA Diving

The FINA Diving World Cup kicked off Thursday with individual preliminaries, and seven of eight Team USA divers advanced to the finals in Berlin.


Both U.S. divers in the men’s 10-meter competition finished in the top five in the preliminaries as Brandon Loschiavo (Purdue Diving) was third and Josh Hedberg (The Indiana International School of Diving) took fifth. Loschiavo finished with 408.85 points, including a forward 4½ tuck that scored 79.55 points. Hedberg finished with 385.70 points and earned 75.60 points on both his armstand double back with 2½ twists and his back 2½ with 2½ twists. Chinese divers Yang Hao and Yang Jian placed first and second in the preliminary round.


Nike Agunbiade (Unattached) also came away with a top-five finish after placing fourth in the women’s 10-meter preliminaries with 285.20 points. Her final dive, an inward 3½ tuck, scored 67.20 for her best marks of the day. Katrina Young (Trojan Dive Club) finished sixth with 243.05 points, including a forward 3½ pike that earned 58.50 points. China’s Quan Hongchan and Chen Yuxi Chen led the field.


The U.S. also had two divers advance in the women’s 3-meter competition as Samantha Pickens (COM Aquatics) placed eighth and Kristen Hayden (Johansen Diving Academy) placed 12th to grab the final qualifying spot into the final. Pickens finished with 235.80 points, with her best dive coming in the first round with an inward 2½ pike that scored 58.50. Hayden scored 222.95 points, including 54 points on both her forward 2 ½ with a twist and her inward 2 ½ pike.  Chang Yani and Chen Yiwen, both of China, finished first and second in the preliminaries.


In the men's 3-meter preliminaries, Carson Tyler (Johansen Diving Academy) placed eighth with 367.50 points to advance to the final. Tyler had consistent diving with four dives scoring more than 60 points, including his forward 2½ with two twist that scored 66.30 points. Tyler Downs (RipFest) scored 330.25 points to finish 13th, missing the finals by one spot and 9.35 points. Downs' highest scoring dive was his forward 2½ with two twists, which scored 68.00 points. The top two finishers in the preliminary were Wang Zongyuan and Cao Yuan of China.


Competition at the Berlin World Cup continues through Sunday. Friday’s competition begins at 8:00 Eastern with the women's synchronized 10-meter event followed by men's synchronized 10-meter synchronized and the men's individual 3-meter final. FINA's YouTube Channel will stream all competitions and have replays of the Berlin World Cup.