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Viewmont and Bingham claim prep diving titles

The first event held in the new Park City School District Aquatics Center was, like the facility itself, a dandy as Viewmont and Bingham won their first-ever 5A state diving championships Saturday.

In boys' competition, defending state champ Landon Trost of Timpanogos started strong and never looked back in winning another individual gold medal. Meanwhile, Hunter High junior Amanda Muir showed fellow competitors the value of perseverance in capturing the girls' individual title.Trost took the lead the moment he landed his first dive, a forward 11/2 somersault pike. He never trailed, earning enough points in his first 10 dives alone to distance himself from second-place finisher Jacob Jewett of Brighton.

"There's no one better (than Trost)," said Viewmont coach Kent Misener, whose Vikings surprised the defending champs to win the team title.

Jewett edged Orem's Devin Thomas by a mere 1.44 points to claim the silver medal.

Viewmont was helped by the steady performances of Toby Johnson, Brad Dutson and Jordan Brown, who placed fourth, fifth and seventh, respectively. Trost's teammate, Jonathan Law, was the final medalist, finishing sixth.

The Vikings finished with 41 points, edging Timpanogos . Orem was third with 27 and Brighton fourth with 26.

"I'm really proud of my three divers for hanging in there and stepping it up," said Misener. He added that he felt coming in that Viewmont had a chance for the title, but still found himself "flabbergasted, excited and surprised" when it happened.

Two years ago as a freshman, Hunter's Muir barely qualified for the state championships, and then finished 24th - last place. Saturday she turned things completely around - the talented junior edged Viewmont's Gayla Nelson to win the individual title.

Muir sparkled in the reverse somersault tuck, forward 11/2 somersault pike and her final dive - the forward double somersault pike - to edge Nelson, 308.28 to 306.75. One of the other co-favorites, Brighton's Sara Neilson, failed to score on her fourth dive and finished sixth.

Bingham had only one medalist - senior Lacey Scott in fifth place - but the Miners earned the state title with four divers among the 13 finalists. Coach Annie Adams said her team "performed better here than we did in region. It was great to qualify all four of our divers for the finals."

Other medalists were Alta's Jamie Judy in third and Brighton's Koko Stucki in fourth.