MUNSTER | Munster junior Jacob Comanse knows the shoes he has to fill this season are colossal, to say the least.
Graduation of regional qualifiers Zach Cherogan and Sean Cloghessy after last season bestowed the torch upon Comanse. He's ready to run with it.
"I've been getting a bigger list with harder dives to do," Comanse said. "That's basically it, just trying to be at their level of diving."
Some of those new dives include a forward 1 1/2 somersault with one twist and an inward 1 1/2 pike. Working with veteran coach Bill Chappo, new to Munster but a longtime Valparaiso diving coach, has helped Comanse immensely.
"He's making a good input on me," Comanse said. "It's a lot of new ideas and new techniques I'm learning that are really improving my diving."
Chappo has changed some of Comanse's mechanics. They've also concentrated on the consistency of his approaches and take-offs on his dives. Chappo said he knows Comanse has the physical tools needed to make a big impact this season.
"He's really making some nice improvements and is open to change," Chappo said. "His heighth has always been a plus; he gets really good height on his dives. Every day, he comes in prepared to get a good workout, and he shows progress on every one of his dives."
Munster coach Matt Pavlovich is counting on many new athletes to step up for a fairly young Seahorses team this season, and as the No. 1 diver, Comanse's success will be important to how the team fares.
"He's kind of our go-to guy right now," Pavlovich said. "I've watched him the last few years, and I've always thought he could really progress nicely, and I think he's got a lot of the tools to be a nice, strong diver."
A seventh-place finish at last season's Crown Point Sectional left Comanse hungry for a rebound performance this season. A regional qualifying spot is a definite goal, with a state berth also in his sites.
"I've been practicing really hard," Comanse said. "This year, I think I'll be ready to show everyone what I'm made of by the time sectionals and regionals come around."