Boys swimming and diving: Monaghan does it again
Rosemount senior Dan Monaghan has had some bad luck around the time of the last two state swim meets.
After qualifying for state at last year’s section meet, Monaghan broke his teeth on the diving board at his very next practice. Monaghan defended his section 1-meter dive title two weeks ago at Prior Lake and, of course, the next practice he swung his arms out too far on a dive and broke his left hand on the same board.
Some missing teeth didn’t affect him last season, when he went on to run away with the Class 2A state title, and this year was no different. Monaghan rose above the pain and overcame a 21-point deficit through eight dives to overtake runner-up Patrick Quarberg of Minnetonka 439.25-438.70 on the final dive of the competition Saturday at the University of Minnesota Aquatics Center.
“I don’t know how that happened. It was the next practice after sections both times,” said Monaghan, a senior who will continue his diving career with the Gophers. “You grab your left hand when you go into the water, so every dive hurt, but the rule is you can’t have it wrapped, so I kind of fought through the pain.”
Quarberg ended up feeling the most pain. He sat in the lead with 317.60 points after the semifinals. Monaghan was a distant fourth with 296.55 points.
“That was really different. I hadn’t been in too many situations where I had to pull together my best three dives to win,” Monaghan said. “It was nerve-wracking to be in a situation like that.”
Monaghan made up a little ground with his ninth dive, and then nailed his 10th dive to move up to third place and within three points of the lead with one dive to go. Monaghan then closed out his set with a forward 1 ½ flips with one twist, which earned him 46 points and gave him the lead.
Quarberg responded with a dive that left him 55-hundredths of a point shy of Monaghan.
“That was hard to watch. That was scary,” Monaghan said. “His dive could have been better, but since it was such a high degree of difficulty I didn’t quite know where he was going to score.”
Seconds later, the final results were posted on the Aquatics Center scoreboard: Monaghan, 439.25; Quarberg, 438.70.
“I felt happiness and kind of relief,” Monaghan said. “I definitely wanted to defend my title and prove to everyone that I’m still the best.”
Monaghan’s title accounted for 20 of 35 points for the Irish, who finished 19th among 37 scoring teams.
Eight points came from the foursome of Frank Haney, Sam Kendall, Derek Schnoor and Noah Peterson, who combined on a 13th-place finish in the 200 freestyle relay. Haney, Kendall, Peterson and Ian Gardiner also combined to place 16th in the 200 medley relay.
Individually, Kendall and Haney each reached the consolation finals. Kendall came in 14th in the 200 individual medley and Haney was 15th in the 50 freestyle.
Gardiner was 32nd in the 100 butterfly prelims and Kendall was 20th in the 100 breaststroke prelims.
“We tapered for sections and the boys peaked then and maintained through state, which is really tough to do,” Rosemount coach Tami Carlson said. “They did a good job with it.”