In his three years as Centerville High School swimming coach, Tyler McKee already has three trips to state.
His first two, the Bulldogs sent now graduated Brett Stoughton there, and just this past Saturday, sophomore diver Brooke Madden placed seventh at the girls meet.
The boys sectional is this week at New Palestine. Centerville, Richmond and Hagerstown will compete with a shot at the Feb. 28-March 1 state meet on the line.
Event winners this Saturday and any swimmer meeting the state standard time will advance to state.
The top four divers advance to the Brownsburg regional Tuesday with the top eight there earning a ticket to state.
“It’s great, it’s great motivation for the other swimmers,” McKee said at Saturday’s girls state competition. “They come every year to support those that make it to state, and it gives them something to shoot for and it’s just really turning the program around and it sets the bar for other swimmers coming up.”
Preliminaries are Thursday at 5:30 p.m. Finals start Saturday at 9 a.m.
Cost is $6 per session or $9 for both sessions.
Richmond coach Brian Turner is in his first year with the Red Devils and is looking for strong performances from his boys.
Red Devil Matt Holt returns after placing second in the 500 at last year’s sectional, as well as fourth in the 200. Junior John Holthouse was fifth in the breaststroke, and senior Sam Rutledge was seventh in the 200, eighth in the backstroke.
“Matt Holt’s going to be seeded pretty high, Sam Rutledge’s going to be seeded pretty high in the 100 backstroke. Shannon (Boyd) and Dustin Swonder and John Holthouse, all three should be seeded pretty close to the finals, so it should be a good day,” Turner said of his Red Devils.
Junior Jeremiah Waltz advanced to the diving regional last year and was third at this year’s North Central Conference Tournament.
McKee also hopes his swimmers can perform well.
“We’ve got Nick Madden, he’s always a strong swimmer, he’ll be in the 50 and the 100. We also got Matt Glover in the 100 freestyle and the 100 back and a couple of our relays should be pretty strong,” McKee said recently. “Brandon Dillman’s been coming along, working really, really hard this year. He’s a junior this year and next year, his senior year, he’ll be fun to watch.”