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RICHMOND - James Madison University senior diver Kimberly Helfrich was voted the Colonial Athletic Association Diver of the Year by the league's head coaches on Thursday. The honor highlighted a sweep for the JMU diving program as freshman Carly Alexander claimed CAA Rookie Diver of the Year honors and head coach Becky Benson garnered Diving Coach of the Year accolades.
Towson's Kaitlin Burke was voted the CAA Swimmer of the Year. Her teammate Hannah Snyder shared Rookie Swimmer of the Year honors with UNCW's Jenson Engen while Towson's Pat Mead was selected as the Swimming Coach of the Year for the sixth time.
Helfrich received CAA Diver of the Year honors for the second time in the past three seasons. The senior was honored as the Outstanding Diver of the Meet at the 2013 CAA Championships. She won the 1-meter competition with 299.85 points and also claimed gold on the 3-meter board with 327.00 points. At the NCAA Zone A Diving Championship, Helfrich finished fifth in the 3-meter competition with 590.35 points. Helfrich, who also earned the award in 2011, is one of only three JMU athletes to be named Diver of the Year, joining Amanda Kuehl (1996) and Nicole Jotso (2012).
Alexander finished fourth in both diving events at the 2013 CAA Championships. The freshman compiled a score of 251.50 in the 1-meter competition and had a score of 256.20 in the 3-meter competition. She is the third JMU athlete to earn Rookie Diver of the Year honors in the past four years, joining Helfrich (2010) and sophomore Alex Savage (2012).
Benson was named CAA Diving Coach of the Year for the fourth year in a row after the Dukes had three divers place among the top-four finishers on both boards at the conference championship.
In addition to the 2013 major award winners in women's swimming and diving, the following individuals and relay teams received All-CAA accolades based on their performances at the CAA Championships. JMU collected 17 individual All-CAA accolades and five relay honors.