CK girls welcome new swim coach and other water-friendly notes

Patrick McKenzie isn’t new to the pool deck, but he is in his first season coaching girls swimming at Central Kitsap.

The former Denver-area high school and club swimmer, turned somewhat-water-polo collegian at the University of Denver took over the Cougars’ boys team last year after the departure of Mari Guarliardo.

He’ll now be patrolling the deck at Olympic during practice for the Cougars and league meets in the 3A Sound Sound Conference. It was senior Grace Smith’s mom, Helen, that told McKenzie about the open position and he said he was excited to take over and make the program great again. You can read more about CK and all our local swim teams in our team-by-team previews, as well as our feature story on Klahowya’s Kira Crane who is looking to win her first state championship.

McKenzie moved to the area so his wife, Margaret (Briggs) McKenzie, a 1999 South Kitsap graduate, could receive brain cancer treatment and be closer to family. Happily, she is doing very well and the couple has two small children.

Bainbridge welcomes Bullock

CK isn’t the only area swim team to welcome a new coach.

Sarah Bullock, a Bainbridge Masters swimmer, took over for long-time coach Greg Colby who resigned and moved to Boise, Idaho, after 24 years guiding the Spartans that included top four finishes at the state meet, and as Bullock said, “a lasting legacy as a team (and) culture of hard work, dedication,  togetherness, and fun, all the ingredients for success. ”

No board for you NK

North Kitsap won’t be getting a diving board any time soon, unfortunately for the program.

NK coach Greg Braun said the school was interested in purchasing a diving board, however the manufacturer determined the pool was six inches to shallow and wouldn’t sell them a board.

“Without a diving program, it makes it more of a challenge to compete with programs that do have diving,” he said.

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