Ipsen, Dumais lead 3-meter qualifying
Kristian Ipsen missed only one dive in advancing to the 3-meter springboard final with the top score at the US Olympic trials on Wednesday night.
He led throughout the six-round semifinal, scoring 993.80 points and putting more distance between him and synchro partner Troy Dumais, who is bidding to join Greg Louganis as the only American men to make four Olympic diving teams.
Dumais totaled 954.20 after missing two dives. Scores carry over to Sunday's final.
A pair of 2008 Olympians was close behind. Chris Colwill was third at 951.15, with Thomas Finchum fourth at 836.85. Two of Dumais' brothers, Justin and Dwight, were fifth and sixth among the 12 divers advancing to the final.
Ipsen is seeking his first Olympic berth, although the Stanford sophomore-to-be has two world meets under his belt. He and Dumais won a silver medal in 3-meter synchro at the 2009 worlds in Rome, and they were fourth last year in Shanghai. They own the lead going into Friday's synchro springboard final.
''It's kind of a weird dynamic,'' Ipsen said about competing against and with Dumais. ''But we've been doing this for so long, so it feels kind of natural.''
Ipsen missed his third dive, an inward 3 1/2 somersaults, getting scores ranging from 4.5 to 5.5. But he rallied in the next round, earning a string of 9.0s for a forward 2 1/2 somersaults with 2 twists.
''I've been struggling internationally and getting really nervous,'' he said. ''So I got here early and I've been trying to be in control of my environment instead of letting it control me.''
Troy Dumais, who has recovered his voice after fighting strep throat and a virus this week, got his lowest marks on an inward 3 1/2 somersaults in the third round. His highest marks came on his signature dive, a forward 2 1/2 somersaults with 2 twists pike that he did in the second round. He said he might change the order of dive list for the final.
''Even Greg Louganis said put your best dive last,'' he said.
On women's 10-meter platform, Brittany Viola led all five prelim rounds in scoring 380.55 points, including a 10.0 on her first dive. Katie Bell, who trains at Ohio State, was second at 339.25.
Viola, the 25-year-old daughter of 1987 World Series MVP Frank Viola, is competing in her third trials. She came close to making the Olympic team four years ago, but finished fourth.
''There's been a lot of lessons, a lot of them have been very challenging,'' she said. ''My body feels very good. I'm so thankful. I'm in the best shape I've ever been in.''
Viola received the only 10 of prelims on her opening forward 3 1/2 somersault. She scored slightly more points for her second dive before settling into a consistency over the final three rounds.
''To start off like that is wonderful, but it's also a reminder to go on to the next one,'' she said. ''I just had a blast. I'm really enjoying the competition. I'm in a very peaceful place.''
Her father, the 1988 AL Cy Young Award winner, couldn't get away from his job as pitching coach for the Savannah Sand Gnats, the New York Mets' Single-A affiliate, to attend the trials. But her mother and sister are here.
Among the other 18 women advancing to the evening platform semis were Amy Korthauer in third, followed by Laura Ryan, Anna James and Victoria Lamp. Haley Ishimatsu was seventh.