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Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended May 14, 2000
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News about Mormons, Mormonism,
and the LDS Church
Sent on Mormon-News: 12May00

Summarized by Kent Larsen

RM Returns To NCAA Championship, Maybe Olympics
Ft Lauderdale FL Sun-Sentinel 11May00 S2
By Sharon Robb

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLORIDA -- Less than a year after returning from an LDS mission to Argentina, olympic-class diver Tyce Routson is back in top form. Routson, currently a senior at the University of Miami, won his first NCAA championship since returning, and is back in contention for a spot on the U.S. Olympic team.

Routson has two other NCAA titles, won in the 1997 NCAA championships before his mission. At that point, Routson was considered an early hopeful for the 2000 Olympics. But Routson shocked his coach by choosing to go on a mission. "It was quite a commitment on his part," said his coach, Randy Ableman, who gave Routson his blessing. "It was something I wanted to do," said Routson. "I didn't know what to expect. It was two years of service in any way that the people needed it."

Now, Routson is one of 18 divers competing this weekend in the FINA/USA Diving Grand Prix at the International Swimming Hall of Fame Aquatic Complex, a competition lasting until Sunday. Fortunately, Routson's diving skills returned quickly following his mission. "I was a little bit lost when I got back on a board, but it felt good to be back," Routson said. "First, Randy gave me this big bear hug when he saw me, and then he said, `We have a lot of work to do.' Sometimes it's almost better starting all over from scratch. Taking two years off, there was doubt. I kept thinking where would I be when I came back. I notice a lot of people have gotten a lot better. I am just trying to get back to where I was and feel happy about what I'm doing."


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