Wantagh's Capobianco wins second straight diving title
Wantagh eighth-grader Andrew Capobianco won his second straight Nassau diving championship on Wednesday with an 11-dive score of 510.20. In addition to becoming the first seventh-grader to win the diving title last year, he is now the first eighth-grader to win it.
Capobianco went undefeated in dual-meet competition for the second straight year and broke his own Nassau diving record this past weekend at the division championships with a score of 536.10. He also holds the Nassau six-dive record with a score of 318, which he set in the sixth dual-meet of the season. He also won the diving event at the LISCA Eastern States Championships on Jan. 26 with a score of 496.20, missing out on the LISCA record by just nine points.
Capobianco is one of six divers who qualified for the state meet on Wednesday. Joining him will be Syosset’s Nick Woska (492.00), Bellmore-Merrick’s Kevin Moran (463.15) and Moustafa Ibrahim (435.50), Cold Spring Harbor’s Kyle Rooney (441.65), and Farmingdale’s James Mangione (432.20). Divers must score at least 420.35 to qualify for states.
Capobianco said he is hoping to improve on last year’s performance in the state meet where he finished 16th with a score of 391.90.
“I wanna finish top five and just improve on last year,” he said. “I’m gonna try to have a little more fun; last year I was a little tight, so I just want to enjoy it this time.”
Said Wantagh diving coach George Taylor III: “He might be top 3. I have a lot of confidence in him. If he can just stay calm mentally, he can definitely make top 3 or even win the championship.”
It will be his last chance, though, as Capobianco and his family will be moving to North Carolina after the school year. He will continue to hone his diving skills and train with Duke University diving coach Drew Johansen, who also coached the U.S. National Team at the London Olympics.
“I’m gonna miss him,” Taylor said. “But he’ll definitely make Olympic trials eventually; he’s getting one of the best coaches in the country. He’s a great listener and he works very hard and I look forward to one day seeing him at Olympic trials.”