15-year-old wins national diving title

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Louis Daignault (ISN)

May 26, 2013, Quebec City (ISN) – Olympian Jennifer Abel set a personal best score and Philippe Gagné, a 15-year-old diver from Montreal, won the gold medal on the men’s 10-metre tower on Sunday to conclude the 2013 Summer Senior Nationals diving competition.

The competition is also a selection event for the FINA World Championships July 19 to August 4 in Barcelona and the World University Games in Kazan, Russia July 6-17.

On women’s three-metre, Abel totalled 374.55 as she closed within 20 points of the Canadian record held by Blythe Hartley since 2008. Pamela Ware of Beloeil, Que., was second with an impressive 342.60 and Aimee Harrison of Winnipeg third at 290.65.

”I’m pleased with my day,” said Abel with her sixth national crown. ”I’ve had a really great season so far and I had confidence with all the work I’ve put into it.”

Abel receive her best score for her forward dive in the second round and also nailed her reverse dive which had been given her trouble all season for four 8.5’s, two 9.0’s and a 9.5.

Gagné earned solid scores on four of his six dives in the final including his two most difficult ones to end the competition for 397.95 points. Fraser McKean of Victoria took a surprise silver at 393.45 and Maxim Bouchard of St-Constant, Que., the event favourite, was third at 391.35.

”I’m really surprised,” said Gagné, a ninth grader who started diving at age six. ”I had a pretty good final. All my dives were stable. This is a list I’ve had for a year now and I feel really comfortable with it.”

Full results: http://www.issmembership.com/diving/live/schedule.aspx

More information: www.diving.ca

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