Athens divers make a splash

By: Mark Vest | Troy Times | Published November 28, 2018

 Troy Athens junior Jessica McEachern dives at the Division 1 swim and dive state final Nov. 16 at Eastern Michigan University. It was McEachern’s third consecutive season making the state finals.

Troy Athens junior Jessica McEachern dives at the Division 1 swim and dive state final Nov. 16 at Eastern Michigan University. It was McEachern’s third consecutive season making the state finals.

Photo by Erin Sanchez

 Junior Rosemary Northcote qualified for the finals for the second straight year.

Junior Rosemary Northcote qualified for the finals for the second straight year.

Photo by Erin Sanchez

TROY — Only 36 divers from Michigan qualified for this year’s Division 1 swimming and diving state final, and two of them are juniors at Troy Athens.

It was Jessica McEachern’s third straight year qualifying, and the second for Rosemary Northcote.

Northcote made it to the semifinal round of the competition, while McEachern’s run ended in the preliminary round.

Although she has done so in each of her three seasons at Athens, qualifying for the finals hasn’t gotten old for McEachern.

“It’s pretty spectacular,” she said. “That’s always my goal at the end of the season is to make states. … I think it was still really exciting.”

McEachern has put a lot of hours into trying to become a proficient diver, including at the club level during the summer. And although training isn’t always the most fun part of athletics, the rewards can be pretty sweet.

“It’s (almost) like tears of joy, being able to know that’s what my goal is, that’s what I accomplished, and all that hard work did lead to something,” McEachern said.

Although it does take work to be among the top divers in the state, it would be hard to achieve that kind of status without including some enjoyment in the mix, too.

“It’s fun, especially with the people, learning new dives and trying to see what new dives I can do to compete,” McEachern said.

For all that she has already accomplished, there is still something that McEachern would like to do before completing her time as a diver at Athens.

“For senior year, I was hoping to get top eight at states, which would be All-State,” she said. “That would be the best.  … I’m (going to) try to learn new dives and see if I can accomplish the top eight.”