GVSU diver dominates one-meter board

GVL / Emily Frye

GVL / Emily Frye

Mason Tronsor

This Grand Valley State student-athlete earns GLIAC diving honors regularly. He calls the 1-meter diving board his home. The water is graced by his elegant form and technique. He is Jared Gregory.

The sophomore from Lansing, Michigan has proven this season that his freshman campaign was no fluke. After earning two All-American honors and finishing 11th at the 2015 NCAA Division II Championships, Gregory has continued to rise in 2016. His current undefeated season on the 1-meter dive board is in itself an accomplishment to keep in the record books.

“I’ve been working really hard on my one-meter,” Gregory said. “This summer I put in a lot of work, so it’s nice to see all of that hard work paying off.”

Gregory’s success largely has been aided by GVSU assistant diving coach Steve Burciaga. Burciaga knew Gregory wanted to exceed his performances from last season, which allowed him to coach Gregory as hard as he needed to.

“Last year I would talk to Jared about competing versus participating,” Burciaga said. “He embraced wanting to compete this year and worked very hard during the summer. He has seen the results of the hard work and gained confidence and determination. I am very proud of his efforts so far.”

This week will begin the march to a possible GLIAC title for both the men’s and women’s squads. Gregory hopes to aid the Lakers with his continued dominance on the 1-meter board.

“We have a stronghold in diving as all seven of both men and women’s teams have qualified for the national championships already,” said GVSU head coach Andy Boyce. “So we are excited to see what they can do at both the conference meet and the national meet.”

Gregory’s success this season has made him one of the top divers in the GLIAC.

“Each time I win, more pressure is added on me to keep performing at that level and keep winning,” Gregory said. “Going into conference I feel like I have a lot more pressure to perform to my best abilities knowing that now most people who have seen me know that I’m the target to beat.”

His mindset to defeat all the hype and pressure is simple. Gregory says consistency is one of his best abilities when it comes to diving. As long as he goes through all the repetitions in practices and keeps a strong mentality, he should be fine, by his standards.

When Boyce talked about Gregory, he mentioned the diving team as a whole. Gregory’s teammates, sophomores Ian Ellis and Joe Gucwa, along with freshman Brad Dalrymple, all have supported him throughout his strong season.

“The dive team itself is super close,” Gregory said. “They are all my best friends. We all support each other every day. If I don’t end up winning, I want someone else on my team to win. We really try to push each other to all perform at our best.”

Gregory’s expectations are high, but maybe not as high as others may think.

“It would be nice to keep this undefeated streak at the GLIAC (meet),” Gregory said. “At nationals I’m just hoping to make it in the top eight and to dive in the final round, since last year I only made it to the preliminary rounds.”

The GLIAC Championships begin Feb. 10. The NCAA Division II National Championships will be held in Indianapolis in March.