Olympian Earns Gold Medal Under Cougar Coach Jane Figueiredo

HOUSTON (Oct. 2) - Under the tutelage of Cougar Head Diving Coach Jane Figueiredo, Russian diver and UH volunteer assistant diving coach Vera Ilynia won the Olympic Gold Medal in the synchronized three-meter springboard event at the Sydney, Olympics.

Ilynia and her partner, Youlia Pakhalina, won the gold medal with a score of 332.64 points, defeating the heavily-favored tandem of Jingjing Guo and Mingxia Fu of China (321.6 points). Ilynia had been training under Figueiredo in Houston the past two years. She served as a volunteer assistant coach for the Cougar divers last season.

Figueiredo is in her tenth season at the helm of her alma mater's diving program. She competed in the 1984 Olympics for Portugal and also coached the British Olympic divers at the 1996 Games in Atlanta. She has trained a host of NCAA All-Americans and conference champions while at Houston, most-recently two-time NIC Champion Yolanda Hernandez-Casas on the one and three-meter spring board last season.

Figueiredo will be back on campus from her Sydney Olympic experience on Monday, October, 9.



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