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State qualifiers to lead Railer swimmers

Mark Schnabel
mschnabel@thekansan.com

The Newton High School boys’ swimming team will look to six state qualifiers to lead the Railers in the 2020-21 season.

Kimberly Powell returns for the second season of her second tenure as head coach for the Railers.

Newton was sixth in the Ark Valley-Chisholm Trail League Division I meet last year and 25th at the Class 5-4-3-2-1A state meet.

Returning state qualifiers include senior Creed Ekerberg, junior Simon Hodge, senior Luke Schmidt, junior Andrew Barron, senior Max Musser and sophomore Otis Musser.

Ekerberg is a three-time state qualifier. He was 22nd at state last year in the 50-yard freestyle.

Ekerberg also is the defending AV-CTL I champion in the 50-yard freestyle.

Hodge and Ekerberg placed 11th at state in the 400-yard freestyle relay and 13th at state in the 200-yard freestyle relay.

Ekerberg, Schmidt, Barron and Max Musser placed 18th at state in the 200-yard medley relay.

“Season goals: strive for personal bests at each meet and for the returning state swimmers their goal is to make it back to state,” Powell said. “Team goals: stay healthy, be supportive, swim fast.”

Powell called Derby the top contender for the AV-CTL I title this year. Derby is the defending league champ, while Salina South was second and Maize was third. Maize South joins the league, moving up from the AV-CTL II. Salina Central moves down to AV-CTL II.

Derby was 16th at Class 6A state.

Maize South was seventh at 5-4-3-2-1A state last year, while Maize was eighth and Salina South was 11th.

Newton is scheduled to host the league meet this season.

Schedule

(subject to change)

Dec. 5 @ Maize Inv. 1 p.m.

Dec. 11 @ El Dorado Inv. 4 p.m.

Dec. 14 Newton Inv. I (diving 2 p.m., swimming 4 p.m.)

Jan. 7 Newton Inv. II (diving 2 p.m., swimming 4 p.m.)

Jan. 14 @ Emporia Inv. 4 p.m.

Jan. 19 @ Campus Inv. 3 p.m.

Jan. 22 @ Wichita Heights Inv. (diving) TBA

Jan. 23 @ Wichita Heights Inv. (swimming) 11 a.m.

Jan. 29 @ Wichita Northwest Inv. (diving) 6 p.m.

Jan. 30 @ Wichita Northwest Inv. (swimming) 10 a.m.

Feb. 3 @ Salina South Inv. 1:30 p.m.

Feb. 12 AV-CTL I diving 5 p.m.

Feb. 13 AV-CTL I swimming 10 a.m.

Feb. 18-20 State @ Capital Federal Natatorium, Topeka TBA