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Scapens Pulls in First All-America Honor of Career

GREENSBORO, N.C. – Making his first trip to the NCAA Men’s Swimming & Diving Championships, Brodie Scapens earned the first All-America honors of his career Thursday night at the Greensboro Aquatic Center.

Scapens finished seventh in the 1-meter on the opening day of diving at the NCAA Championships, clinching Miami’s third NCAA All-America of the postseason. Scapens joined women’s divers Mia Vallée and Emma Gullstrand as NCAA All-Americans in 2021.

Scapens, who nailed a forward 2 ½ somersault with one twist in the afternoon preliminaries (339.60) to help secure himself a berth in the finals, delivered one of the best performances of his career on the board.

On his second dive of the final round, he put together a forward 3 ½ tuck that was one of his top-scoring dives on the day. He finished with a final-round score of 337.15.

“He came to Miami as a 10-meter specialist,” head diving coach Randy Ableman said. “His springboard has improved so much. He’s no slouch on the 3-meter either, and with this sort of result on the 1-meter, I look for him to come back tomorrow and have a great result on that board as well. He’s nursing a shoulder injury, but he’s a warrior. He did great…some of the best dives he’s ever done on 1-meter.”

True freshman Jack Matthews finished in the top 10 of the 1-meter by taking second in the eight-man consolation finals. Matthews, whose preliminary score was 310.95, came back with a strong performance to earn NCAA Honorable Mention All-America recognition.

“I can’t be more proud of him,” Ableman said. “He just started school in January. He performed so well. He was only one missed dive away from making the final in the 1-meter. Our team gets better the higher on the boards we go. To have two guys in the top 10, the way we’re built, is a fantastic result. As for Jack, I couldn’t be more proud of him. Now, we have a goal of raising it up a notch tomorrow.”

Matthews and Scapens will be joined by Max Flory for Friday’s 3-meter springboard. On Saturday, Scapens, Flory and veteran co-captain Zach Cooper will compete on the platform. Matthews, a talented tower diver who has battled through a wrist injury, did not participate on the board in NCAA Zone qualifiers.

“We’re young. This is the first NCAA Championships for three of the four guys, just like it was last week for both women,” Ableman said. “They brought it. They don’t look like first-year divers out there, and that makes me feel good. A lot of fellow coaches were very congratulatory to see how our guys performed under these lights. We’re ready to let it rip tomorrow.”