Abington’s Henninger dives to pool, District 1 records

TOWAMENCIN >> Sam Henninger just relaxed, listened to music in between dives, and got into a zone no one’s ever gotten into at District One diving.

With a commanding score of 606.10, the Abington junior set a Rick Carroll Natatorium pool record as well as a District 1-3A record in a gold-medal performance Friday night.

“I was so close last year,” Henninger said with a smile, speaking of last year’s silver-medal finish in which he missed first by just six points. “Now I’m here.”

“This gives me a lot more confidence,” Henninger said of heading to the state championships, “going in, knowing I can dive like that. I wanna go in and dive exactly how I did here.”

Henninger led a sensational top two, as Souderton Area’s Wesley Ahart made a tremendous jump from eighth a year ago to district runner-up, with a score of 534.30.

Also making states out of 3A were Alec Pirone of West Chester Rustin, Michael Burke of Upper Dublin, Evan Meiers of North Penn, Matthew Humbert of Pennsbury and Dan Cohen of Central Bucks South.

Henninger cemented his victory with a tremendous inward two and a half.

“Usually that’s a hit-or-miss dive,” he said, “but I felt like that was good today.”

Of the pair of records, Henninger said: “That’s so exciting — really awesome,” as he surpassed the pool record of 586.0 set by North Penn’s Bryce Hoch last year, and the district record of 602.45, set by William Tennent’s Ian Forlini in 2012.

“Definitely this year I was a lot more calm,” Henninger said. “Going in, knowing what I was doing, I just sat there, listened to music, and got through it.”

Ahart has also found his home on the board. He made the choice early on as a youngster.

“I was a swimmer originally, so I’d be swimming laps in the morning and I’d be looking over, seeing the divers flipping and stuff, and I was like ‘that looks more fun than swimming,'” the senior said with a smile.

Bound for Pitt, Ahart was one of only two divers Friday night to crack 500 points.

“I felt pretty good. It’s really nice to be here in my last districts and to be able to work with such great people over the years,” Ahart said.

Over in Class 2A, Bishop Shanahan’s Michael Robinson won the gold and Lower Moreland’s Michael Watanabe got the silver, as both punched their ticket to states.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply