THORNTON — Ralston Valley junior Izzy Gregersen will attempt to claim her first diving state championship during the Class 5A girls swimming and diving state finals Friday night.
Gregersen already has a pair of top-10 finishes — 3rd in 2019 and 7th in 2018 — under her belt. While she admits there is a bit of pressure being the favorite heading to the finals at the VMAC in Thornton, the junior’s main focus is clear.
“I want to do well,” Gregersen said of the finals Friday. “We’ll see how it turns out. I’ll come in, do my best and have fun with everybody.”
During the prelims and semifinals held Thursday morning Gregersen was in the center of the action at the VMAC. She had a chair set up right in the middle of the pool deck between the three diving boards talking to many of the other 43 divers that qualified to the 5A state meet during the eight rounds of dives.
Gregersen finished the semifinals first with a point total of 351.1. Heritage senior Grace Downing is a close second with 348.6 going to the finals tomorrow.
“It’s really just fun to be out here. I’m used to diving club,” said Gregersen, who is ranked nationally. “I find it more fun and laid back.”
Ralston Valley had the largest contingent of divers than any 5A program. The Mustangs qualified six — Gregersen, Jordan Okamoto, Payton Roberts, Kelly Heald, Gigi Borghi and Sophie Trudell — to the state meet.
Okamoto and Roberts both finished in the top-20 to join Gregersen in the finals.
“I love hanging out with Payton (Roberts) and Jordan (Okamoto). They make diving more fun,” Gregersen said. “I also enjoy hanging out with the other teams and getting to know them.”
Roberts a senior and three-sport athlete — gymnastics, diving and track — has already signed to dive at the University of Idaho. Okamoto has a bright future ahead as just a sophomore.
Whatever happens after the finals, Gregersen has one more season diving for Ralston Valley before heading onto the college ranks. Gregersen says that she has talked to a few schools, but hasn’t narrowed down her list of colleges yet.