As soon as Amelia Rinehart hit the water, coach Matthew Hayward knew he had just seen something special.
“I just went absolutely crazy,” said Hayward, who coaches Rinehart's Arlington Park Swim and Dive Team. “As soon as I saw her enter that water, I was like, 'Woo,' I was screaming for her, I was so excited. She did amazing.”
Rinehart, who competed in Friday's City Dive Meet at Helen P. Brown Natatorium in the 13-14 age group, landed a 205C back 21/2 tuck off the 3-meter board, earning her four perfect 10 scores from the judges and a lonely 9.5. Hers were the only 10s of Friday's meet across any age group or level.
“I was just focusing on doing it like I usually do and then I heard the scores and I was just ecstatic,” said Rinehart, 14, who will attend Snider in the fall. “That was I think one of my best ones (ever).”
Rinehart, who will participate in the USA Diving Junior National Championships in Indianapolis in late July and early August, won the 13-14-age girls title at Level 3 on the 3-meter board and Level 5 on the 1-meter. She took the 1-meter crown with a score of 303.50, more than 100 points clear of second-place Ellie Castleman at 190.90.
On the boys side, Carroll's Adam Carr was the medalist on the 1-meter board for the 15-and-up age group at Level 5, finishing with a 258 total score. He was also third in the 3-meter at Level 3, missing out on second to Blackhawk Swim and Dive Team teammate Marcus Roberts by 0.6 of a point, and another Blackhawk diver, Brendan Waite won the medal at that level.
“I'm pretty happy about it,” said Carr, who earned his first win in an event in his fourth year participating in the city meet. “Three-meter I'm kind of sad, but it's OK, it's always good to get a win, you know? It means a lot. I've been working hard to get here, and now that I've got (a medal), I'm pretty happy about it.”
“The 1-meter, I think those were probably the best (dives) I've ever had in my life, honestly. I've never done any better than that,” he said.
Waite finished second in the 15-and-up 1-meter Level 5 to go with his 3-meter victory. Sycamore's Ellie Murotani won the girls' 15-plus 3-meter Level 3 and finished second in the Level 5 1-meter. The champion in the latter was Arlington Park's Anna Yaggy.
“Oh my gosh, I'm so proud of my divers, I think they did awesome today,” said Hayward, a Concordia graduate who dives for Anderson University.
Holly Hineman, another Blackhawk diver, won the 1-meter girls 13-14 Level 3 and the 3-meter Level 1.
The meet, which has been taking place since 1961, was canceled last year because of the pandemic. It returned this year, as will the City Swim Meet, scheduled for July 30 to Aug. 1.
“I think I speak on every coach, it's awesome, we're really excited to have the City Meet back,” Hayward said.
The diving meet for ages 8-12 will start about 9 a.m. today at the natatorium.