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Jetstream divers shine in Georgia

Austin Hampton and Chris Colwill win gold medals while some of their teammates finish in the top 10.

By TERRY JONES

© St. Petersburg Times,
published July 3, 2001


BRANDON -- With state, national and world diving championships scheduled for the next six weeks, 10 members of the Jetstream Diving Team at the Brandon Swim and Tennis Club are poised to make a run.

In the Moose Moss Invitational Diving Championships recently in Moultrie, Ga., Crystal Rasmussen and Ashley Williams led the girls while Austin Hampton and Chris Colwill set a blistering pace for the boys.

Colwill, 16, a former member of the USA Junior Diving team who has won several gold medals, won gold medals in the 1- and 3-meter springboard in the boys 16-18 division.

In men's open competition (all ages and levels) with other Olympic hopefuls, he placed second in the 3-meter springboard and fourth in the 1-meter.

Jetstream coach Amy Koffel said she was pleased with the results. "Chris Colwill has his name whispered by better divers and coaches as a good bet for the next Olympic team," Koffel said.

"He did well in the meet in Georgia and should have a good run at the world championships this year. Austin Hampton is also a seasoned diver and has already made trips to national meets. He was relaxed, comfortable and in control in Georgia."

Hampton, 14, has six years of experience and will be a freshman this fall at Admiral Farragut in St. Petersburg. In the boys 15-and-under competition, he won the 3-meter title, placed fifth in the 1-meter and was fourth in the platform.

"Although the meet in Georgia went well, I could have done much better on my 1-meter dives," he said. "I have learned tons this summer working out with the Jetstream and hope to learn more.

"I have a lot to work on before the regionals this weekend. Hopefully, I will do well enough to move on to zones, nationals and world meets."

In other boys competition, Chris Plante, 11, finished fourth in the boys 11-and-under 1-meter and eighth in the 3-meter for 13-and-under. Enrique Roy, 19, finished eighth in the 1-meter and 10th in the 3-meter in men's open competition.

Crystal Rasmussen, 16, and Ashley Williams, 13, fared the best among the six Jetstream girls at the Georgia meet.

Rasmussen placed seventh in the 1-meter and 12th in the 3-meter in the 16-18 division. Williams was seventh in the 1-meter and 23rd in the 3-meter for 13-and-under.

"I missed training the past couple of weeks because of an injured ankle. But it is coming around, and I think I will be close to 100 percent soon," Rasmussen said.

"The competition was pretty tough in the Georgia meet, and it won't get any easier if I make zones and nationals. That is good, though. I have been meeting college divers and others who are tough."

Rasmussen placed sixth in the Class 5A high school state meet last fall.

"Competition for the girls was much tougher if just by the sheer numbers," Koffel said. "Often, there were more than 32 divers in just one event. But our girls did well from the youngest to the oldest."

Alie Lepech, 9, was the youngest diver. She placed ninth in the 1-meter and 15th in the 3-meter in the 11-and-under division.

Kelly Herremans, 11, placed 12th in the 3-meter for 11-and-under. Kaylee Doback, 13, finished 20th in the 1 meter and 15th in the 3-meter and platform for 13-and-under.

And Rachel Korth, 17, finished eighth in the 3-meter and ninth in the 1-meter for 18-and-under.

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