MINNEAPOLIS -- Former Brainerd Warrior diver Shaun Kennedy, last year's Class 2A state champion, had to start somewhere.
As an eighth grader, Kennedy didn't exactly set the world afire. In fact, Kennedy, who currently is diving at the University of Minnesota, didn't even qualify for the state meet that season. Kennedy's accomplishments are now well documented.
The same goes for Warrior diver Scott Tetreault. He had to start somewhere.
In his first Class 2A state meet, Tetreault, an eighth grader, finished 29th in the preliminaries Thursday at the U of M Aquatics Center with a score of 109.15.
Brainerd diving coach Owen Trout knew that Tetreault needed to at least score well enough in his first five dives in order to make the cut, so he moved Tetreault's dives around.
"We moved Scott's 10th dive to the fifth one because it's a higher scoring dive," Trout said. "I think the nerves got to him a little bit. He just got caught up in the excitement. This field is pretty experienced and the divers there were throwing some good twisters."
Tetreault also drew the unfavorable task of being the first diver to start the competition. The first diver has the daunting job of setting the tone for the rest of the divers with the judges.
"You don't really want to be first because all the judge's scoring is based off the first diver," said Trout. "If he throws a great dive the judges can't score it too high because they have to leave room for the next divers. Scott's first dive was very good but the score wasn't as good and that threw him off a little bit."
Tetreault shook off his first dive and nailed his second to get him back in the hunt.
"I was really proud of Scott's second dive," Trout said, "he scored almost 30 points on it and it looked like he got back on track. But then his third dive he threw it too far and the judges nailed him for it. We were hoping for a strong finish."
Trout points out that Tetreault could also excel as a swimmer for the Warriors, and if he puts in the work, could be Brainerd's first diver/swimmer combination at state.
"Scott had a good meet in the sense that he learned a lot," said Trout. "You can learn as much from your defeats as you can from your victories. He's going to be a good diver if he continues to apply himself. He has a lot of natural ability.
"Scott's still figuring it all out. It helps him to see what it takes to get to the next level. He got a little taste for state and I hope he gets hungry."
Class 2A diving preliminaries
1-Nathan Kim (St. Paul Central) 362.45
29-Scott Tetreault (Brainerd) 109.15
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