Jan. 3, 2004
ATHENS, Ga. -- Tennessee freshman Jevon Tarantino came from behind to grab a first-place finish to highlight a strong opening round at the three-day Georgia Diving Invitational Saturday.
Tarantino claimed the three-meter event in the eight-team meet with junior Phillip Jones placing third.
"I was very pleased with our performances this evening," head diving coach Dave Parrington said. "This was a very exciting competition and a good confidence boost for us."
After the preliminaries Tarantino was 38.5 points behind leader Caesar Garcia of Auburn. But Tarantino kept creeping closer before taking the lead with the final dive.
"I didn't start off well and got behind by a big margin early," Tarantino said. "By the time the final dive came I was only eight points behind and I landed my best dive. That put the pressure on Garcia and he couldn't match."
Today's event was the season debut for Vols' returning All-America Jones.
"Phillip showed a little rust early but came back and did some good things for the team today," Parrington said.
The one-meter preliminaries begin at 11 a.m. Sunday, with the 10-meter to conclude the meet Monday.
Strong start to dual-- Tennessee and Auburn staged the diving competition of the teams' Jan. 16 dual swimming and diving meet at Auburn Saturday because the Vols will be competing at the USA Diving World Cup trials in Charlotte, N.C. that day.