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Men’s Diving: Villaflor wins top honors at tourney

Chris Allen | Monday, February 15, 2010

Irish head coach Tim Welsh and diving coach Caiming Xie issued a challenge to their divers to get Notre Dame off to a strong start in the Big East Championships this weekend. Junior diver Wes Villaflor answered the challenge, and then some.

Villaflor swept the diving portion of the Championships, winning the 1-meter and 3-meter springboard events in dominating fashion en route to winning Most Outstanding Diver at Trees Pool at the University of Pittsburgh.

Villaflor’s victory in the 1-meter was in come-from-behind fashion. Villaflor was sixth at the end of the preliminary round but posted a score of 347.00 in the finals to vault into the top spot, ahead of Irish diver Nathan Geary, who posted a 326.75 in the finals. Rounding out the Irish contingent was freshman Ryan Koter who finished sixth in his debut with a 272.25.

Villaflor led coming out of the preliminaries with a score of 373.65 to hold on to the championship ahead of Geary, who posted a 333.15.

The strong showing by the trio of Irish divers highlighted a great start to the Big East Championships, which saw  Xie take home the award for Big East Diving Coach of the Year as well.

The Irish are now in good position as the teams transition to the swimming portion of the event, which begins Wednesday at Trees Pool at 7 p.m.