Record-breaking sophomore says he’s motivated for next season

Although Kaemon Jiles’ season didn’t end the way he wanted, the Columbus North sophomore had some big moments on his way to the state finals.

Jiles broke both the six-dive and 11-dive school records at North. He then won sectional and regional titles before finishing 26th in the state finals.

“It started out pretty slow, but once I got the hang of it I found the sweet spot, and things started clicking for me,” Jiles said. “Toward the end of the season, things got progressively better, and I was pleased with the outcome.”

‘Top of the world’

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The opening week of the season, Jiles broke Ryan Brand’s 22-year-old six-dive school record with a 289.2 at Franklin. He then broke Brand’s 11-dive mark with a 436.15 in the Conference Indiana meet.

“I went into the season looking at that record board,” Jiles said. “I went in thinking I was going to get the 11-dive first because the six-dive was harder to get. I didn’t really expect to get the six-dive this year, but once I got it, I was on top of the world. It made me feel great, then getting the 11-dive record was the icing on the cake.”

“I think he had a fantastic year,” North diving coach Lauren Hawes said. “Before the season, we started talking about what he wanted to accomplish this year. He said ‘I want to go to state.’ I said ‘OK, we’ll work on that.’ So we went into the big competitions and had mock meets during the season and focused on doing the best dives and perfecting the little things to get him to state.”

After winning sectional and regional titles, Jiles didn’t make it out of the first round at state. That will serve as motivation for next season.

“Last year I didn’t even place top eight in regional, and to come back this year and win, doing as poor as I did at state, I know I can do better,” Jiles said. “Based off of what I did last year, it’s a confidence boost to come back next year.”

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Ted Schultz is sports editor for The Republic. He can be reached at tschultz@therepublic.com or 812-379-5628.