Huntington’s Arceri takes fifth in state diving finals

Huntington’s Arceri takes fifth in state diving finals

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Tricia Arceri flips into the pool. File photo by Darin Reed

Tricia Arceri always has a list of goals she is striving to attain. One of them has been to reach the medal platform at the New York State diving championships. The Huntington junior can now put a check next to that one after finishing fifth out of 43 divers Nov. 18 at Ithaca College.

Tricia Arceri leaps off the board. File photo by Darin Reed
Tricia Arceri leaps off the board. File photo by Darin Reed

Arceri was in eighth place after the first round of the state championships and was sixth following the semifinals. The diver moved up to fifth place following the final-round dives.

“I had a great meet,” Arceri said. “I set a goal to be on the podium and achieved it taking fifth place. My new goal for next year is to be on the top of that podium.”

Prior, Arceri won the county crown with a record-setting score Nov. 4.

“Tricia walked onto the deck for the county diving championships knowing she was already headed to the state championships [after earlier meeting the qualifying standard],” said Meg McConnell, who coaches Huntington’s divers and serves as assistant to Blue Devils head coach Christopher Helmke. “She completed an undefeated dual-meet season, won the Sachem diving invitational as well as handily winning the six dive events at the League I championships. … It was time to get the county championships win.”

Arceri’s first county’s effort, a required back dive, was nearly flawless, garnering the teenager four 10s out of a possible five. “As the preliminary round continued she remained in the lead solidly hitting all her dives, even her least favorite reverse 1 1/2 somersaults,” McConnell said.

As the semifinal round began, Arceri started with an inward and scored 10s across the board. Two dives later, the round concluded with the Huntington star still leading the field.

“I set a goal to be on the podium and achieved it taking fifth place. My new goal for next year is to be on the top of that podium.”

— Tricia Arceri

“To start the final round, Tricia chose her forward 2 1/2 somersaults, her hardest dive,” McConnell said. “With an imperfect takeoff it didn’t come out great, but luckily the higher degree of difficulty helped offset the lower scores of the judges.”

Arceri continued holding the lead through nine dives, but on her 10th, which also earned her all 10s, she dropped into second place due to the lower degree of difficulty it was assessed.

The meet concluded with Arceri performing  higher-difficulty dive. The inward 1 1/2 impressed the judges, who awarded the diver 9.5s and 10s, sealing her first Suffolk championship and helping the Huntington standout set a new county scoring record with 618.10 points.

“Going into the final group of dives the scores were close,” Arceri said. “The girl that had placed second [Grace Reeves of Lindenhurst with 609.90 points] had a little more of degree of difficulty, meaning I had to nail every dive. I am very consistent with my final dive and I knew I had to go out there and do it the best I ever could, so I did. … Beating my own score was great, but getting the county record is even better.”

The trip this past weekend marked Arceri’s third trip to the state championships, where she finished 14th last year.

— Huntington Athletics