Off the blocks!

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island file

    Kapaa High’s Maddie Hoesel kicks off in the backstroke phase of the girls 200-yard medley relay during the 2019 Kauai Interscholastic Federation swimming championships at the YMCA pool in January.

The Kapaa High School boys and girls swimming teams have dwindled in numbers before the start of the season.

The Warriors will travel from Kapaa to Lihue, and share a practice space with Kauai High School. The Kapaa pool, built in the 1960s, is currently being repaired.

Team participation dropped from 33 to 17 since the start of the practice season.

The Warriors, along with Island School, Waimea High, and Kauai, willbegin their season at 10 a.m. Saturday at the YMCA pool in Kapaa.

Traveling created logistical challenges for the participants, said Kapaa High School head coach Marti Kitch.

The Warriors, who began the practice portion of the season

“We sometimes don’t swim until around 4, and we are back at seven at night from Kapaa,” Kitch said. “Because we get back so late at night, this has hurt our numbers, and we are entering the season with a small team.”

Kitch, originally from San Diego, participated in Olympic trials in the breaststroke. She will enter her first season as the Warriors head coach.

Kitch’s goals for swimmers headed into this season are oriented toward succeeding individual as much as the team component of the sport.

“What I would like to see is for kids to gain joy through their accomplishment,” Kitch said. “Swimming is a lifelong sport, and you can do that your whole life, and it’s a quick season, and because of that, it’s very much a challenge for us not to have our pool.”

The KIF season will include five home meets in the season that ends in February.

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