LONDON - The third time is supposed to be the charm, but for Troy Dumais, it was the fourth time that proved to be charming.
After going 0-for-3 in the Sydney, Athens and Beijing Olympics, Dumais finally got a medal here Wednesday.
He and diving partner Kristian Ipsen won the bronze in the men's synchronized 3-meter springboard.
The two Americans went into the sixth and final round in second place but dropped to third when Russians Ilya Zakharov and Evgeny Kuznetsov hit 100.32 on their last dive.
Chinese divers Luo Yutong and Qin Kai won gold with 477 points, the Russian pair took silver with 459.63 and Dumais and Ipsen won bronze with 446.70.
Dumais and Ipsen jumped into medal condition in the fourth round when they posted a 90.09 on a gainer-twister that used to be their last dive.
"I had actually struggled with that dive a little bit," Dumais said. "A year back, I hit the board and still have the scars to show for it."
"We had to step it up on our fourth round with the reverse twister," said Matt Scoggin, who has been Dumais' diving coach since he was at the University of Texas in 1999-2002. "We were hoping for 85 points, and they did a 90-pointer. We came through with a solid 84 on in the fifth round and knew we had a great twister for the last round."
Dumais, who claimed he never looked at the scoreboard during the competition, said he prepared for this Olympics better than he did the other three, which produced four sixth-place finishes.
"The whole idea of me coming into this Olympics was to enjoy the moment and have fun," he explained. "I asked Kristian before every dive, 'Are you having fun?' He was like 'I'm loving it.' Good, because I am, too."
When the final count went up on the scoreboard, Scoggin said he hugged Dumais and he hugged him back "really tight."
"I told him it was worth the wait and I was very proud of him. He was as happy as I have ever seen him," the coach said.
At 32, Dumais was the oldest of the 16 divers who competed in the event.
"He still feels young inside," Scoggin said.
Dumais will try to win a second medal in the individual 3-meter springboard event, which will begin Monday.
(Nick Gholson, sports editor of the Wichita Falls Times Record News, is part of the Scripps team covering the London Olympics. Contact him at gholsonn(at)timesrecordnews.com.)
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