Evelyna Johnson showed her Sheffield steel to win gold for Southampton Diving Academy (SDA) in the National Skills Finals.
Competing in the girls’ 11 years category – the largest in the prestigious competition – Evelyna put in some impressive dives to comfortably win the gold medal, scoring 9s and 9.5s for her last two dives on the 3m springboard.
Overall, the 45-strong Southampton team performed incredibly well at Sheffield’s Ponds Forge complex, landing two bronze medals and two fourth-place finishes in addition to having a national champion.
Milly Batten dived well in the girls’ ten years age group to win bronze, gaining scores of 8-8.5, followed by a 9. Agonisingly, her final score was less than a point away from the silver medal.
Gabrielle Kirkham also won a bronze medal, competing in the girls’ 12 years age group. She impressed on poolside and 3m, scoring many eights to win her podium place.
Other notable performances came from Alfie Lakeman Brown, Nicole van Hoof, Duclie Wilson and Ethan Bennett, who all achieved top-six placings, with Dulcie and Ethan finishing in fourth.
Senior coach Jack Clewlow hailed the team’s showing. He said: “I was delighted with the performance of the Southampton divers. It was a good opportunity to watch children in the early stages of their career up against others from all around the country. The results bode well for the future.”
Full results: Girls’ 9 years: 4th Dulcie Wilson, 7th Collette Guyett-Smith, 9th Evie Brighton. Girls’ 10 years: 3rd Milly Batten, 12th Lucy Chandler, 20th Amy Leneve. Girls’ 11 years: 1st Evelyna Johnson, 19th Leah Burnston, 22nd Sofia Sathio, 24th Astrid Davis, 28th Victoria Ward, 34th Grace Hill, 35th Maddie Newcombe.
Girls’ 12 years: 3rd Gabrielle Kirkham, 11th Mia Wood, 16th Megan Curtis, 18th Ella Anderson, 19th Chloe Harrington, 20th Georgia Milward, 21st Liberty West, 23rd Ysabella Foster.
Girls’ 13 years: 9th Chantelle Beckett, 14th Catherine Palmer, 22nd Serena Torpey, 26th India Bari.
Girls’ 14/16 years: 6th Nicole van Hoof, 17th Suzanna Burt, 23rd Victoria Kennedy. Boys’ 9 years: 5th Milo French. Boys’ 10 years: 4th Ethan Bennett , 10th Aidan McMullan, 14th Jonathan Cross, 15th Nathan Bull, 16th Finley Hughes.
Boys’ 11 years: 14th Ashley Burnard, 18th Hamish Lindsay, 19th Alex Walton, 22nd James Madden, 24th Thomas Crew.
Boys’ 12 years: 12th Thomas Cove, 14th Reuben Brown.
Boys’ 13 years: 8th Daniel Cove, 9th Oliver Clements.
Boys’ 14/16 years: 6th Alfie Lakeman-Brown, 22nd Oscar Kitchen.