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Aztecs Sign Four Standout Divers for 2014-15 Season

Three-time CIF champion Alexandra Caplan is one of four divers to sign with the Aztecs for next season.
Three-time CIF champion Alexandra Caplan is one of four divers to sign with the Aztecs for next season.

Dec. 4, 2013

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - San Diego State diving coach Roland McDonald has announced the signing of four divers to National Letters of Intent for the 2014-15 season. The four athletes are all prep seniors from the Orange County area who also compete for the Crown Valley Divers.

The members of the signing class all finished among the top nine at the 2013 CIF Southern Section Division I Championships and the group includes three NISCA All-Americans and the CIF Section champion the past three years.

Alexandra Caplan, a senior at Mission Viejo (Calif.) High School, has won the title on the 1-meter springboard at each of the past three CIF championship meets as well as her league championship events. She has been named a National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association (NISCA) All-American each of her first three seasons as a high school competitor. As a club diver, she finished first at the 2013 USA Diving Summer Junior Zone E Championships on the3-meter board and paced second on the 1-meter before going to take ninth on the 3-meter board and 11th on the 1-meter springboard at the national championships.

Makena Chamoures (San Clemente High School) is another three-time NISCA All-American who has placed fifth, third and second at the past three CIF Southern Section Division I Championships. She finished sixth on the 1-meter board at the 2013 USA Diving Region Championships and went on to finish 10th and 13th respectively on the 1-meter and 3-meter boards at the National Championships. In addition to holding the San Clemente HS diving records, Chamoures has also had success at the club level including first-place finishes on the 3-meter board at the 2009 Summer Zone Championships and 2008 Chris Vonk Memorial Invitational along with first-place on the platform at the 2008 USA Age Group National Championships.

Nicole Dutton (Dana Hills High School) placed ninth at the 2013 CIF Championship meet after finishing 13th and 11th the previous two seasons. A native of England who came to the U.S. in 2006, she qualified for the Nationals on both the 1-meter and 3-meter boards in 2010 and 2011, but was unable to compete there due to her citizenship. She is eligible to compete at Nationals this year after recently attaining her U.S. citizenship. In addition to diving, Dutton has also been on the track and field team at Dana Hills HS the past three years competing in the pole vault, high jump and long jump as well as the 100 meters and 100-meter hurdles. She was named the Most Valuable Field Athlete as a freshman after placing second in the league in the pole vault and high jump along with third in the long jump.

Payton Gabris, who attends Rancho Santa Margarita (Calif.) Catholic High School, finished seventh at the 2013 CIF Southern Section Division I Championships after placing eighth and 10th as a sophomore and freshman respectively. She was second at the 2013 Trinity League Finals and was named the Diver of the Year. In 2013 she earned NISCA All-America honors. Gabris joined Crown Valley Divers in 2012 after having previously competed for the Mission Viejo Nadadores. At Crown Valley she earned the Dryland Warrior Award in 2012 and 2013 along with the Most Dedicated Diver Award in 2012. She was also named the Most improved Diver for the Nadadores in 2010. This year she placed in the top five in all four events at the Lee Brennan Memorial and she has competed in numerous Regional and Zone championships during her diving career.

"This has to be the best class of diving recruits in the history of our program," commented McDonald. "It's pretty exciting to have signed these four quality divers all of whom have competed for the same program at Crown Valley Divers under Coach Curt Wilson.

"Caplan and Chamoures bring national experience at both the junior and senior levels and have had standout high school careers. Dutton, who has shown great potential in training, has been a CIF finalist the past three years and now that she's a U.S. citizen she can compete at the Nationals for which she has qualified the past two years. Gabris will add a high level of depth to our program as she has received All-American recognition and experienced success at the Junior Olympic level. This class is going to be special for us over the next few seasons."