Small makes a small splash in the pool


Provided by Jeremiah Small

Small makes an acrobatic dive into the pool.

James Farley, Co-Managing Editor

Standing on the diving board, junior Jeremiah Small prepares for his dive. He bounces up and down on the board, and then leaps into the air, soaring down into the water. This formula has proven to work wonders for Small, as he has dominated in the pool throughout the winter season.

During this Swim and Dive season for WA, Small has assembled an incredible resume, helping the Ghosts win the DCL Championship. Small broke the WA Boys’ Diving record, which he already held, with a score of 305.40 on Jan. 20. Additionally, Small scored the highest point total in the DCL Championship out of all the boys’ divers with a score of 269.35. He extended upon this victory by winning the MIAA North sectional diving championship with a score of 467.15.

These remarkable scores are a product of significant hard work from Small throughout the season. Small practiced six days a week for WA, and on some days drove directly to Worcester or Sudbury to dive with his club team Dolphin Diving. 

“Diving with them [Dolphin Diving] gives me the chance to train and compete all year long, and the extra practice can really help me during the high school season,” Small said. “I don’t think I would have gotten to where I am if I just dove during the high school season.”

Small’s diving coach at WA, Kim Donovan, notes Small’s work-ethic as a trait that sets him aside from many swimmers, helping him to take the crown as the top diver in the DCL, and even potentially Massachusetts.

“Jeremiah’s work ethic is impeccable. He comes to practice ready to give his best and a general idea of what he wants to accomplish that day. As you can see his work ethic is outstanding and greatly contributes to his success,” Donovan said. “Jeremiah drives the bus and I provide the occasional road sign to keep him on track.  With constant athlete and coach communication, we get it done.”

Small’s diving journey started 10 years ago where he began diving for Dolphin Diving. As he improved as a diver over the years with his club team, Small felt confident that he would make an immediate impact for the Ghosts when he reached the high school level. Small did just this, quickly taking the DCL by storm. As a sophomore, he broke WA’s diving record for the first time, and has since broken it again this winter. 

“All the practice over these years has definitely led up to my success,” Small said.

Heading into the season, Small had his eyes set on scoring over 300 points at a meet, which was accomplished with his record setting score of 305.40. He also envisioned winning the sectional meet, which he did on Thursday, Feb. 9, as well as the state meet, which is approaching on Feb. 19.

“At this time I have accomplished the first two [goals of mine], and I will be competing in the state meet on Feb. 19, so we will see how that meet goes,” Small said.

Along with his own hard work, Small credits his coaches over the years, Donovan among them, for the success he is seeing this year.

“My coaches formed me into the athlete I am today. I have had many coaches over these ten years and each of them has made me better in one way or another,” Small said. “They are the reason for my success.”

Small also acknowledges the encouragement and familial camaraderie that his teammates bring to the team on a daily basis, making it an enjoyable environment for fun and growth as athletes.

“My teammates are the real reason I love to compete in high school. They support me every step of the way, and give me the motivation to put in the effort to do as much as I can to help the team,” Small said. “These are the greatest guys you could ever want as teammates.”

This great team chemistry is a vital reason for why WA repeated as DCL champions this year. While this is a major win for WA, they are still focused on practicing hard in preparation for the remainder of the season.

“Winning DCLs felt great, but at the time we knew there were still more meets left in the season, so we enjoyed our victory and got back to work in preparations for sectionals. We were able to win through everyone’s hard work,” Small said. “There are so many good swimmers on the team, and everyone pushes us forward to success.”

Small has earned grand individual awards this year, but his skills help WA as a team to great heights as well.

“Winning the diving [event] is the same as winning a relay, so when I get first, I score 20 points for the team, so that can give us a little bit of an edge if the meet is going to be close,” Small said.

As an athlete with such individual success, Small recognizes his opportunity to dive at the collegiate level, hoping to attend a Division 1 school once he graduates from WA. Donovan believes that Small will definitely be able to compete at a Division 1 college as a diver.

“Jeremiah will be able to dive in college if that’s what he wishes to do,” Donovan said. “Beyond college, I think Jeremiah can take this journey a long way if he so chooses.”

Overall, through his success, Small has discovered a love for not only the sport, but also the people that it surrounds him with along the way.

“The best part about diving is the other divers. From my experience everyone I have competed and trained with were the most amazing people I have ever met. They will always support you, and make diving as fun as it is,” Small said. “I don’t think I will ever find a more supportive and fantastic group of people.”