THDC wins regional, qualifies seven divers

Cassie Weil sweeps to three gold medals in the Region 10 championship

BEAVERTON - In a dramatic finish, divers from the Tualatin Hills Dive Club came from behind to win the Spring Region 10 Junior Diving Championships, held last weekend at the Tualatin Hills Aquatic Center.

The meet featured 120 divers representing 18 teams from several Western states. Eleven participating THDC divers earned a team score of 265 points. Stanford Diving, last year's Regional Championship team, finished a close second with 256 points.

'It's great to be the region's top team again,' said THDC head coach Joe Lyons, noting that THDC last won the regional competition in 2005. 'I knew it was going to be a tight contest, but I thought our club's excellent platform divers would make the difference.'

Indeed they did. The THDC was in third place going into the platform portion of the meet, but moved into the top spot after THDC divers won five of the six individual platform events.

The competition also served as a qualifying event for next month's Spring West Championships.

Seven THDC divers will advance to the meet, including Daniel Helm, Kevin Olson and Cassie Weil. Their standout performances at last summer's Junior National Championships earned THDC a 14th-place national team finish.

At last weekend's Regional meet, Weil, 14, was the only competitor to earn three gold medals, sweeping the 14-15 girls age group. Olson, also 14, was one of the few divers to earn two first-place finishes.

Fellow THDC divers Cassie Anderson, Nicholas Han, Britni Fisher and Tristan Versteeg also qualified to advance by finishing in the top six in their age groups. The Spring West Championships will be held April 25-27 in Columbia, Mo.