KNOXVILLE, Tennessee, July 31. THE first eight titles of the 2014 USA Diving Age Group National Championships were awarded Thursday as the three-day competition kicked off in Knoxville, Tenn.
Gold medalists on the first day of competition were Elliott Bjorkman (Sunset Hills, Mo.), Anne Fowler (Burke, Va.), Kendall Hollimon (Altadena, Calif.), Jay Lang (South Lyon, Mich.), Allison Leung (Cupertino, Calif.), Christina Lu (Ann Arbor, Mich.), Kevin Pomeroy (El Granada, Calif.) and Heather Yoshii (Mission Viejo, Calif.).
Bjorkman, who dives with the Clayton Diving Alliance, won the 11-and-under boys 3-meter title with 205.50, with silver going to Moss Farms’ Timothy Fagan (Moultrie, Ga.) at 202.40. Competing in his home pool, Tennessee Diving’s Bennett Greene (Alcoa, Tenn.) took the bronze with 192.05 points.
Fowler, of the Alexandria Dive Club, claimed the top spot in the 12-13 girls’ 1-meter event with 254.95 points. The Woodlands Diving Academy’s Samantha Vear (Conroe, Texas) was second with 247.15, while fellow Texas Sarah Krolnik (Wylie, Texas) of Mustangs in the Sun was third at 233.75.
Rose Bowl Diving’s Hollimon scored 365.85 points for the 14-15 boys’ 3-meter gold, with the Montgomery Dive Club’s Mory Gould (Potomac, Md.) scoring 353.00 points for silver. Whirlwind Diving’s Owen Stevens (Darien, Conn.) and Fishers Diving Team’s Cole VanDevender (Fishers, Ind.) tied for third, with each scoring 344.35 points.
Legacy Diving’s Lang scored 304.70 points to pick up the win in the 12-13 boys’ 3-meter final. Long Island Diving’s Youssef Ibrahim (North Bellmore, N.Y.) captured the silver with 299.30 points, and Bravo Diving’s Seth Caspers (Waterford, Mich.) scored 291.30 points for bronze. Tennessee Diving’s Garrett Greene (Alcoa, Tenn.) finished 19th on the event.
Leung, who competes with Santa Clara Diving, took first in the 11-and-under girls’ 1-meter contest as the only diver to top 200 points. She finished with 202.00 points, with Crown Valley Diving’s Krystia Mischel (Aliso Viejo, Calif.) scoring 191.00 to edge SoCal Diving’s Alexandra Robinson (Irvine, Calif.) for the silver. Robinson picked up the bronze with 189.75 points.
Lu gave Legacy Diving its second title of the day after finishing with 382.30 points for the 16-18 girls’ platform gold. In a close contest for the silver medal, Tennessee Diving’s Emily Bretscher (Knoxville, Tenn.) scored 376.80 points at her home pool to pick up the silver medal after edging Mile High Diving’s Averly Hobbs (Littleton, Colo.) by 0.45 points.
Stanford Diving’s Pomeroy scored 444.00 for gold in the 16-18 boys’ platform final, while Kevin Fulton (Flanders, N.J.) took silver with 440.75 points. Duke Diving’s Max Showalter (Oak Park, Ill.) rounded out the top three with 417.30 points.
Yoshii, of Crown Valley Diving, won 1-meter gold in the girls’ 14-15 age group after finishing with 313.60 points. Indiana Diving’s Ivy Houser (Danville, Ind.) scored 305.00 points for silver, with UCLA Diving’s Alice Yanovsky (Santa Clarita, Calif.) winning bronze with 299.45 points.
Thursday’s competition marks the beginning of three consecutive USA Diving national championships meets to be held at the University of Tennessee’s Allan Jones Aquatic Center through August 17. The Age Group Nationals run through August 2, with the USA Diving Junior National Championships to follow from August 4-9 and the AT&T National Diving Championships set for August 12-17. More than 350 divers will compete in the Age Group Nationals, while nearly 400 divers are expected for the Junior Nationals. With the Rio 2016 Olympic Games nearly two years away, the AT&T National Diving Championships will feature many of the nation’s top senior divers.
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