The Tar Heels ended up finishing 44th overall in the championship.
Who stood out?
Despite the solid showing, Allen was focused on how he could have done better.
“I would love to make the top eight. I was only seventeen points out, but I didn’t have the best performance or the performance that I wanted,” Allen said.
However, diving coach Abel Sanchez acknowledged how tough it would have been to crack the top eight, considering how steep the competition is. He also made clear that he was pleased with Allen’s overall performance.
“He was a little off. He had to be on," Sanchez said. "He had to be almost perfect and it was it still good enough to make it into the top 16. Just not the top eight, but we’ll take that."
When was it decided?
Allen’s prelim performance was his strongest showing, helping him get into the consolation final. He scored 323.55 points. In the consolation round, Allen scored 276.85 points to nab honorable mention All-America honors.
Why does it matter?
After qualifying for the NCAA Championships as a first-year, Allen was poised for a return during his sophomore season. However, an injury in the 2018 NCAA Zone Championships ended his season early.
Allen knew it was going to be a tough road to recovery in order for him to be able to compete next season.
“It was really difficult to come back after my injury, my concussion. I was really nervous to get back up 10 meters just because I was scared of having another incident up top,” said Allen.
Sanchez was also aware of the difficulty surrounding his recovery. He described the mental challenges that Allen would have to face.
“That could be a career-ending injury, and it’s scary to come back from that because not only does he need to heal and get back up there, but just to do it again the first time is really frightening,” Sanchez said.
Allen was able to return this season and he significantly improved upon his first championship appearance. He was able to qualify for the consolation and place 15th after placing 29th in 2017.
The long road to recovery was worth it.
“I’m really happy that decided to stick through the year and continue diving,” said Allen.
When do they play next?
In their last event of the year, the Tar Heels will compete in the TYR Pro Series in Mesa, Az. starting on April 11.
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