Springfield, Mo. (For OzarksSportsZone.com) -- First-year coach Pete Hill takes over the head coaching duties for the Kickapoo swimming and diving team this year. Hill will be looking to continue Kickapoo’s solid history in the pool this coming fall.
The Chiefs return several strong swimmers in both individual races and relay events, including five state qualifiers in the following events: senior Mason Brown (100-meter butterfly), senior Trey Upton (100 breaststroke), senior Taylor Strong (100 backstroke), sophomore Andrew Workman (500 freestyle) and junior Andrew Smith (100 breaststroke).
The Chiefs will also have returning seniors Paul Yutesler, Noah Scott, Corey Marquardt and Marcelo Estrada; juniors Noah Phillips and Wyatt Harness; as well as sophomores Connor Estes, Manny Estrada, Nick Stone and Matt McClelland. Hill is hoping to have several new state qualifiers out of this group.
“Several have worked hard in the offseason to ensure their return trip to the state meet with a plan to make the top 16,” said Hill. “With the addition of some strong freshman swimmers, I look to strengthening the team as a whole and especially the depth in the relays.”
Former Chiefs and Nixa coach Jason Hite is now an assistant coach at his alma matter, Drury University.
Six freshmen will help fill out this year’s team. They are a strong group and will help the squad in the relays and individual events. The Chiefs are shooting for a conference championship and a top 10 finish in the state championships. Hill believes that this can be done with the strength of his returning swimmers and the addition of several strong freshmen.
“We will continue to look to the core group which will lead this team,” said Hill.
Hill will be looking to his upperclassmen to help the freshmen and newcomers to adjust to swimming at the varsity level and continuing Kickapoo’s strong history in the pool.
It was a tough weekend for our local teams in Blue Springs.
Both Springfield Catholic and Nixa went 0-for-2 on the weekend, forcing them to settle for fourth place in Class 3 and Class 1 respectively.
CLICK HERE FOR NIXA 3RD PLACE GAME PHOTOS --...
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