MOULTRIE — Ed Goodman will officially take over as head coach of the Moss Farms Diving program at about 5 p.m. today when the 2006 Summer East Nationals come to a close at the Moose Moss Aquatic Center.

But he won’t have much time to get his new desk in order this week.

On Friday, Goodman will be on the pool deck in Woodlands, Texas, where five of the Diving Tigers will take part in U.S. Diving’s Senior Zone C championships.

The meet is a qualifying event for the 2006 Senior National Diving Championships, which will be held Aug. 2-5 in Indianapolis, Ind.

The meet annually draws some of the top collegiate divers from around the country, but a number of age-group divers enter to see how they stack up against some of the top competitors in the nation.

The top five finishers in each event at the Zone meet advance to Senior Nationals.

Suffice it to say, it’s a tough meet.

But Ryan Helms, Hannah Moore, Anna Aguero, Kelsey Good-man and Ali Lepech will test their mettle.

Moore, Helms and Aguero went to the Zone meet last year, when it was held in Moultrie, and none was embarrassed, even though they were comparative whipper-snappers.

Aguero certainly was not intimidated.

Although she competed in the 14-15 age group last year, she learned a new dive in just three days and then qualified for Seniors Nationals on platform.

She parlayed her Senior National experience in to an outstanding summer this year in which she has competed well after moving up an age group.

Moore failed to qualify for finals on 1-meter last year, but finished ninth on 3-meter and was just three points from qualifying for Senior Nationals.

Helms made finals on both springboards and was eighth on 3-meter and ninth on 1-meter.

All five have already performed well at this week’s East Champion-ships and have qualified for the National Junior Diving Champion-ships, which will be held July 26-30, also in Indianapolis, Ind.

Goodman, who has been the team’s assistant coach for eight months, has a good idea of what the five can do.

“It can be nerve-wracking,” Goodman said of the Zone meet. “Some of them there have been to the Olympics or will be going to the Olympics. It will be a learning experience for all of them.”

But mostly for Kelsey Goodman and Lepech. Both are just 14 years old, although they have considerable promise.

Goodman already has won a silver medal this week. Lepech grabbed a bronze medal on Saturday.

“I wouldn’t let them go if I didn’t think they had a chance,” the new coach and Kelsey’s father said.

“It’ll be their first senior event, but it will be a good experience, to see what it’s like. And if they make it (to Nationals), wonderful.”

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