Amherst’s Michael Hixon 4th after Olympic diving 3-meter springboard semifinals

  • Mike Hixon competes during the men's 3-meter springboard diving preliminary round in the Maria Lenk Aquatic Center at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro on Monday. He finished fourth in Tuesday’s semifinals to qualify for the final. AP FILE

  • United States' Mike Hixon competes during a men's 3-meter springboard diving preliminary in the Maria Lenk Aquatic Center at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Monday, Aug. 15, 2016. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

For the Gazette
Published: 8/16/2016 12:07:34 PM

RIO DE JANEIRO — Michael Hixon will go for his second medal of the Rio Olympics tonight after a strong performance in the semifinal on Tuesday morning.

The Amherst native scored 467.25 points in the round, placing him fourth out of 18 divers. The top 12 divers advanced to the finals.

Hixon started the round almost identical to the preliminary round on Monday. He received scores of 78, 81.6 and 84 to give him 243.6 points and first place halfway through the round.

But Hixon struggled again on his fourth dive, a reverse 3½ somersaults pike — the same one he missed in the preliminary round. He failed to complete the final rotation, resulting in a bigger splash and a score of 54.25, moving him from first to fifth.

Hixon, however, bounced back, nailing a forward 4½ somersaults tuck almost perfectly. The judges gave him a 91.2 on the dive, his highest score so far this Olympics. A 78.2 on an inward 3½ somersaults tuck sealed his spot in the next round.

American teammate Kristian Ipsen overcame a rough fifth dive to also advance to the final round.

Hixon will dive ninth in the finals at 5 p.m. The forecast should be similar to this morning with clear skies, 6 mph wind and a temperature of 75 degrees, according to The Weather Channel.

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