National Champions Crowned in Mixed Synchro Events
by USA Diving
Krysta Palmer and Jack Ryan won mixed synchronized 3-meter and Max Weinrich and Kaylee Bishop took first in mixed synchronized 10-meter to win the first two national titles at the 2023 USA Diving National Championships, which kicked off Wednesday in Morgantown, West Virginia.
With their wins, the two teams also qualified for this summer’s World Aquatics Championships in Fukuoka, Japan.
Palmer and Ryan scored 282.27 points to edge Kassidy Cook and Tyler Downs by 4.23 points for the mixed 3-meter synchro gold. Bridget O’Neil and Noah Duperre took bronze with 269.46 points.
Palmer and Ryan put together a consistent list and scored 60 points or higher on all three of their optional dives. They were in third place after three rounds before taking the lead with 67.89 points on their front 3 ½ pike in the fourth round. They then had the edge in degree of difficulty in the final round and came through with 65.28 points on their front 2 ½ with two twists to maintain the top spot.
“It’s awesome. It’s hard getting your butt kicked on every dive, but otherwise it’s just awesome diving with Krysta,” said Ryan, who dives at Stanford. “The University of Nevada’s in our zone. During our NCAA Zone Championships, I think (Stanford coach Pat Jeffrey and Nevada coach Jian Li You) hatched the idea. I flew out to Reno and trained there for a couple days, and now here we are.”
Palmer was coming back from hip surgery and was competing for the first time since winning individual 3-meter bronze at the Tokyo Olympic Games.
“We’re excited. I think we keep improving, which is really cool. Even after the training we had in Reno, we’re still improving. I think we have some ways to go and more improvement can be made, but it’s really exciting to dive with Jack. We had a good time,” Palmer said.
Weinrich and Bishop won the mixed 10-meter synchro gold with 247.62 points. Bayleigh Cranford and Aidan Wang took silver at 241.86, and Misha Andriyuk and Anna Lemkin were third with 233.94 points.
“Honestly, I’m speechless. I’m still shaking. I just wanted to go out and have fun, and we did. I’m very excited,” said the 16-year-old Bishop, who trains with Coral Springs Diving.
Like Palmer and Ryan, their coaches suggested the potential pairing.
“Jenny Johansen called Michele (Sandelin). They thought we’d be a good team, and they paired us up. We just went for it really,” said Weinrich, who dives at Indiana University. “I knew we could win the event. I knew we had what it takes. It just comes down to performing in the moment. I think we held our composure really well, and I’m super happy with it.”
Weinrich and Bishop trailed Cranford and Wang after three rounds but moved into first with 51.84 points on an inward 3 ½ tuck in round four and finished with 56.70 points on a front 3 ½ pike.
The USA Diving National Championships continue through May 24. Thursday’s competition features men’s synchronized 3-meter and women’s synchronized 10-meter.