Mid Missouri Diver Makes A Splash On Same Campus As Parents

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COLUMBIA - This weekened at the Mizzou Aquatic Center the Missouri diving club hosted a USA diving zone meet. The diving club's youngest athlete in the meet has a special connection to mizzou, as she's part of a legacy.

"There is a lot of water involved in me growing up," said Elle Christie.

You could say she dove in with both feet at an early age.

"Her mom was a diver, so she probably has some good genetics there," added Missouri diving club coach Amy Gosney.

"I think it's really cool, I know she was really into it and i'm really into it," said Elle, "it really helps a lot because she can coach me when I need some help."

Mom and dad both spent plenty of time in the pool. While Lara Watson dove at Mizzou she met swimmer Scott Christie her freshman year.

"Actually our first date was right after the Drury meet," said Elle's mom, Lara Christie. "The boys swam against Drury and they hit a deer on the way home so he was a little late on the first date."

Better late than never though as the Christie's 11-year old daughter, Elle, is one of the best young divers in the state.

"My best dive is a reverse dive on 1 meter and my most fun dive is a front two and a half on 3 meter," Elle said.

And Elle carries a lot of the characteristics for a successful diver.

"She's flexible, she's strong, she has a nice long body line and makes for good entries into the water," said Coach Gosney. "She can point her toes and she can jump."

"Honestly the things I see are her focus...her determination," added Mrs. Christie.

Elle competes in three events: 1m, 3m and platform, but it hasnt always been easy.

"I think it's really fun, but it's also hard at the same time," said Elle, ''you get really scared of some dives."

"Elle certainly had a spell where she struggled with a lot of fear and she was scared of learning a lot of dives," added Coach Gosney. "Last year we really struggled with that and this year we've overcome that."

"I've overcome my fears by not really thinking about it and just doing it," said Elle.

And what she does shows the potential to follow in mom's wake.

"I want to go to Mizzou because I grew up here and I think it's a really good school and stuff," said Elle.

"She says that all the time," said Mrs. Christie of her daughter's future aspirations, "I want to go to Mizzou. You could go here or here... No, i just want to go to mizzou."

The only difference is that Elle plans to jump her mother's accomplishments.

In all fairness though, the new pool has a lot of advantages. When Lara dove, the ceiling was too low for a platform and the pool was only 10 feet deep.