By Sam Wilson
After starting diving as a freshman, Wyatt Fuller has established himself as one of the best in Western New York through his sophomore and junior seasons.
A junior at Springville-Griffith Institute, Fuller qualified for the New York State championships for the second consecutive season this winter. Fuller placed second in the Section 6 Championships with a score of 422.45 on Feb. 13, after winning the Class C championship with a 475.75 the week before. His season finished again at the NYSPHSAA/Federation swimming and diving championships, scoring a 186.95 in the preliminary round, good for 28th in the state on March 1 at Nassau County Aquatic Center in Long Island.
“This year was pretty good,” Fuller said. “It was probably my best year so far.”
Fuller picked up the sport after fellow divers Jackson Richert and Dakota Schelble, both now seniors, suggested it. He compared the sport to gymnastics, which he had prior experience in.
“It’s similar to gymnastics and just Jackson, Dakota, the other divers pushed me to do it,” he said.
Since joining the swim team, Fuller occasionally competes in relay races, but diving is his specialty.
Springville’s divers work with assistant coach Ryan Dygert. This year, the Griffins had three divers in the top seven of Class C, as Schelble took fourth and Richert was seventh.
“He started us out and he’s helped us grow from the beginning when we first started, and just taught us the basics and then helped us,” Fuller said.
Qualifying for to the state championships again, Fuller called it a “just relieving to make it back.” At the highest level in high school, he sees the difference in competition and gets to know the best divers in the state.
“It’s a lot different than the competitions that we do in Western New York, just because everyone’s at the highest level for high school,” he said.
“You see what you have to do and be able to do to make it in the top places at states.”
His attention will now turn to travel soccer, then fall soccer through the school. But Fuller has other exercises to stay sharp on the diving board.
“There’s a lot of dry-land workouts and stretching that we have to do to make sure that we’re in the top shape to dive,” he said.
Looking ahead to next year, Fuller hopes to improve his placement to the top-16, should he qualify again for the state championships. How will he do that?
“Just have a clean meet and make sure I’m hitting everything,” Fuller said.