Andrews, Virata claim national championship

Andrews, Virata claim national championship

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Andrews, Virata claim national championship

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Logan Andrews envisions competing in diving or playing soccer beyond high school as he’s preparing to enter his freshman year at Lafayette Jeff.

Last week’s performance at the AAU Diving Nationals in San Antonio’s Northside Swim Center may have helped steer him towards a decision four years down the road.

Andrews teamed with incoming West Lafayette freshman Ben Virata to win the AAU national championship in the Boys 14-15 1-meter synchronized event.

“It’s pretty exciting, because we worked hard,” Andrews said. “We practice a lot on synchro. I think we understand how each other dives, so it helps us be more in sync.”

The performances of Andrews and Virata, along with West Lafayette senior Logan Sotelo and Harrison sophomore Phoenix LaLopa, helped Greater Lafayette Area Diving finish sixth out of 34 male teams.

“It’s nice that every single kid I took made the finals,” coach Deana Sotelo said. “That’s a huge thing. There’s a lot of clubs that bring kids and they don’t make the finals.”

Logan Sotelo finished runner-up in the 3-meter for the Boys 18 division with a score of 354.35 and also was fourth in the 18-year-old 1-meter and 12th in the Boys tower.

Andrews and Virata backed up their national title with a second-place showing in the 3-meter synchro. Andrews was runner-up in the Boys 14 3-meter, just 3.45 points behind Boston Area Diving’s Trevor Brown, and also finished second in the Boys 14 1-meter. Virata was eighth and ninth in those two events. Andrews claimed fifth on the tower.

LaLopa is coming off a freshman season with the Raiders where he finished 12th in the Zionsville Sectional. He’s since spent four months perfecting his form with Greater Lafayette Area Diving.

LaLopa was fourth in the Boys 15 3-meter and fifth in the 1-meter.

“He is super talented and I don’t think he saw how talented he is,” Deana Sotelo said of LaLopa. “He has really just come to his own and really focused on diving. He makes great corrections and tries to improve on everything he can. He’s here to work hard every day.”

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Andrews, Virata claim national championship
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