Strong start by Pittsburgh divers at Olympic trials

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PITTSBURGH - Cassidy Krug will carry a 39.20 lead into the finals of the Women's 3M Springboard diving competition. The Pittsburgh diver earned 718.85 points in the semifinals on five dives. 

The top 12 divers advanced to Saturday's finals. Included in that group is another Pittsburgher, Samantha Pickens.  Pickens sits ninth after the semifinals with a total of 570.00 points.
 
This isn't Krug's first attempt to make an Olympic team. She retired after finishing eighth at the 2008 Olympic trials.  The 26-year-old Krug returned to the sport in 2010.  Krug has come back strong winning four national titles since returning, and that strong diving has continued at this week's Olympic trials.
 
"I love the feeling of spinning in the air, and I think my favorite moment is after I've done a great dive, even in practice, when you're underwater before you come up and you know you've nailed it," Krug said.  " It's awesome."
 
Krug currently leads 2008 Olympians Christina Loukas and Kassidy Cook at the Olympic diving trials.
 
Pittsburgh's Samantha Pickens is diving in her first Olympic trials. That's something that surprised the soon to be junior at the University of Arizona, who has her sights set on the 2016 Olympics in Rio. 
 
"This is the starting point for me, these trials. I think I'm going there for experience," Pickens said.  "I never really thought that I would be going to these trials, so what I'm really gaining is confidence and stuff for Rio."
 
Krug and Pickens will dive in the 3M Springboard finals at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Seattle this Saturday afternoon. The United States Olympic Diving trials can be seen on NBC this weekend.