On July 24, the Westchester County Swimming and Diving Championships officially kicked off at Eastchester’s Lake Isle Country Club, as local divers were able to find a break in the inclement weather to showcase their talents. The first event champion would come from the Rye Golf Club, as Katie Laverty edged the field in the 14-17 girls division, finishing with a top mark of 223.85.
Laverty, 16, narrowly outscored Pelham Country Club’s Jennifer Bell (219.65) the reigning dive champion, but felt that she could
have finished even stronger had her execution been slightly sharper.
“For the most part I think I did pretty well today,” said Laverty, a rising junior at Rye High School. “There were a few dives I think could have done better, but overall, I think I had a pretty solid meet.”
Behind the top two finishers, the top five was rounded out by Ines Nix (200.90) from the Lewisboro Town Swim Team, Meera Kasturi (182.65) from Greenburgh and Lizzie Tirado (178.60) from the Westwood Swim and Tennis Association.
The field of 16 divers were forced to get started a little earlier than expected, as Westchester County Swim Association organizers pushed up the start of the event by more than an hour in order to make the most of a brief respite from the rain that postponed the 10-13 division meet on July 23.
“It was a little harder getting up in the morning; around 6:45, my mother was telling me to get out of bed,” Laverty said. “But once I got out here and got in the water, it was fine.”
Laverty’s first-place finish earned Rye Golf Club nine points toward the team’s overall point total and staked her squad to an early lead as the rest of the dive divisions prepare to compete this week, after press time. Those points will be added to the totals picked up by each organization’s swimmers next week, as the local clubs take to the pool at Rye Playland to eventually determine this year’s swimming and diving champion.
Last year, Lake Isle’s girls won handily, outpointing Rye Golf Club 215-114, while Wykagyl Country Club’s boys picked up the title with 201 points.
At the end of the day though, Laverty believes that win or lose, competing at the WCSA championships is always about enjoying the moment.
“All these girls and I are friends, we see each other during the winter, so it’s a no pressure kind of meet,” she said. “It’s just about having fun and diving the best you can.”