Junior Kamryn Bell Transitions from Swimming to Diving


Credit to Savannah Wandzel

Junior Kamryn Bell dives into the water at a meet against FZS on Jan. 29. The meet was at 9 p.m. at the Rec-Plex. The final score at the end of the meet was 87-96.

By Joel Boenitz

As the 2016-17 season approached for the girls’ swim team, they were still looking for a diver to help them win meets. Luckily, one of the swimmers decided to step up and become the diver the team needed: Kamryn Bell.

Fast forward to this year, and the junior is still diving for the team and is still the team’s only diver. On Feb. 5, nearly a year and a half after her decision to switch from swimming to diving, Bell earned fourth place at the GAC meet, a five place jump from the previous conference meet last year. Her final score also gave her a consideration to go to state later this month, but unfortunately she was not selected.

“I was really shocked [that I got fourth],” Bell said. “At first, I thought they skipped me, but it made me really proud of myself and made me realize that I can do these things that I really work hard for and put my mind to.”

Unlike the swimmers who usually practice every weeknight, Bell only practices three times a week. At practice, she does diving drills, runs through dives that she’ll do at meets and tries to improve her dives to make them more visually appealing. According to her coach, Chris Pape, Bell has been able to perform dives at a higher difficulty on a consistent basis and has seemed more confident at whatever she does.

“She’s a hard worker and wants to be there and do everything she can for her team,” Pape said. “She puts in a lot of hours outside of diving, and in return she comes to practice and works just as hard. Diving wise, she’s very strong and has very tight body positions and clean lines, so her dives look pretty.”

Bell plans to take this offseason to train for her senior season, where she hopes to earn her spot at the state meet for diving. She plans to practice more complex dives to help raise her scores for next year.

“I’m going to take diving even more serious next year,” Bell said. “I’ll try to not be as sensitive to things and just realize that my coaches are trying to help me out as much as possible.”