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Nevada alum Krysta Palmer continues dominance at U.S. Olympic trials

Krysta Palmer
Krysta Palmer is in first place in the 3-meter dive after the semifinal round. (Team USA Diving)

Krysta Palmer's dominance at the U.S. Olympic diving trials continued Tuesday in Indianapolis as the Douglas High graduate finished first in the women's 3-meter dive after the first two rounds.

Palmer, also a Nevada Wolf Pack alum, placed second in the preliminary round before an excellent semifinal round put her atop the 18-diver leaderboard entering the finals. She leads second-place Hailey Hernandez by 61 points. The top 12 divers advanced to Saturday's finals.

On her third dive of the semifinals, Palmer scored an impressive 78 points on a Reverse 2 1/2 Pike. Palmer ended her list scoring a 76.5 on her Forward 2 1/2 Somersault 2 Twist Pike, which, at a 3.4 degree of difficulty, was the hardest dive performed in the event. Palmer has a cumulative score of 655.15 for the first two rounds. Hernandez is second with 593.90 points while Alison Gibson is third with 591.45 points.

Palmer and Gibson are also in first place in the women's 3-meter synchro dive after the semifinal round, which was performed Sunday.

"I'm super excited," Palmer said. "Really, I just wanted to go out there and have fun and do my best, and I'm really proud of the list I was able to pull together in the semifinal. I have some great competitors I'm competing against, and I know they are right behind me. And for finals I just want to have fun and let loose and just enjoy the media because we don't get this often. It's fun to be behind the camera; it's fun to experience this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. So I feel pretty excited right now."

Palmer is attempting to become the first local athlete to make Team USA's swimming or diving team.

"I tried to visualize a lot before coming into Olympic trials because it has been a long time since we competed, but I love competing, love performing," Palmer said. "I think that's why we do what we do and that's when I have the most fun, so really coming to this point I was really excited to get out there and compete again. When Alison and I were the first pair to do the first dive off the 3-meter to start off the competition, that just felt like the best feeling. Now we are still really grateful for this opportunity because it could have gotten canceled, but we are here right now, so we are grateful."

Palmer also drew rave reviews from the broadcasting crew Tuesday, with the color commentator and Olympic medalist Cynthia Potter saying, "She is one of the prettiest divers you will ever see. Never loses form."

In individual diving events, the top-two performers qualify for the Tokyo Games. In synchronized, the first-place duo advances to the Olympics. The women's 3-meter dive finals are Saturday at 2:50 p.m. Pacific time. Palmer will compete in the 3-meter synchro Thursday at 4 p.m.

Women's 3-meter dive

1. Krysta Palmer, 655.15

2. Hailey Hernandez, 593.90

3. Alison Gibson, 591.45

4. Kristen Hayden, 568.95

5. Sarah Bacon, 568.00

6. Abigail Knapton, 559.30

7. Brooke Schultz, 549.60

8. Samantha Pickens, 533.80

9. Anne Fowler, 531.25

10. Kelly Straub, 530.05

11. Margo O'Meara, 525.30

12. Bridget O'Neil, 524.95

13. Charlye Campbell, 515.00

14. Kyndal Knight, 497.75

15. Emily Bretscher, 495.35

16. Daria Lenz, 489.00

17. Carolina Sculti, 477.05

18. Joslyn Oakley, 432.80



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