Neely takes ninth at state |

Neely takes ninth at state

ADAM BOFFEYsummit daily news
Summit Daily/Kristin Skvorc

FORT COLLINS – It’s amazing what a difference a lunch break can make. After surviving a disappointing preliminary round at Saturday morning’s 4A state diving meet, Summit High School diver Shauna Neely took a break from the action with her coach Shannon Hoffmann.

“Shauna was very nervous for the preliminaries,” Hoffmann said. “We took an hour-long break together and I told her to go back and just have fun.”Neely took her coach’s advice in the finals and the results were astounding. With just three dives, the Summit standout moved up from 15th place to ninth, finishing with an overall score of 324.4.”I’m really excited,” Neely said later. “One of my goals for the season was to make top 10 at state and I did it.”Liberty’s Stephanie Ortiz won the competition with a score of 434.15. Neely’s Jeffco 10 rival, Kylie Sellers of Ralston Valley, finished second overall, one week after beating out Neely to win the Jeffco 10 League meet (Neely was runner-up).

Neely said she was significantly more calm for the finals then she was for the preliminaries.”I figured the worst thing I could do was take 16th,” she said.According to Hoffmann, Neely saved her best dives for last – an inward dive, a front double and a back somersault.

“She feels most comfortable with those dives and she’s been consistent with them all season,” Hoffmann said. “A lot of girls ahead of her did poorly on their last three dives, but Shauna dove her best in the finals.”Neely has little time to celebrate her long and successful senior season as she will be competing in a USA Diving regional competition two weeks from now at Denver University. Neely, who hopes to dive collegiately, said she plans to practice with Summit’s boys team in preparation for the upcoming meet.

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