This is part of a series of team previews for the fall season. Here’s the complete list.
After fielding just three swimmers last season, the Republic High School swim team is aiming to rebuild behind leader Noah Marshall. Marshall is the lone returner from last year’s squad, but he was determined not to be the only swimmer to suit up for Republic this fall. So he undertook a mission to bring teammates on board himself.
(Corrected to note that Marshall is a junior, not a senior as the original article indicated.)
“I started reaching out and asking around to hopefully find some people who would be interested in joining the Republic swim team,” Marshall said.
Through those efforts, Marshall recruited a core group of newcomers to join him in the pool. He organized practices at the Republic Aquatic Center before the season to teach the basics and bond as a team.
“I was very happy that I could get as many kids as I did, and I couldn’t ask for a better team,” Marshall said. “I’m also glad I can help them find something that they like in high school, because I know how hard it can be to fit in and find your place, especially as a freshman.”
Head coach Steve Boyce credited Marshall’s leadership for setting the foundation for this year’s team. With six swimmers, Republic will be able to compete in relay races. That’s something they couldn’t do last year with only three people on the team.
Marshall brings experience and talent to the rebuilt Tigers. He started swimming in Germany when his family lived there, and he competed in more than a dozen countries during that time. When his family moved to Colorado, he swam for a large club team, joining his first high school squad there as a freshman. After transferring to Republic, Marshall narrowly missed qualifying for state during his junior season.
“I fell in love with swimming from the start and I’ve been at it ever since,” Marshall said.
Now in his seventh year competing, Marshall wants to see his times drop and finally reach state as an individual. More than that, he is driven to see the program grow and his new teammates progress.
“I want to help my team grow and get them excited to come back next year, and see them improve their times and have fun,” Marshall said.
Among the promising newcomers is Reece Mason, who Boyce called the top addition so far. Though inexperienced, Mason brings athleticism and a quick learning ability. Other team members are Simon Greek, Noah Higgins, Kenneth McClellan, and Keigan Morrison. They don’t have high school experience, but Boyce has seen rapid improvement already.
“They are all beginners at the high school swimming level. I am super impressed with the amount they have learned so far,” Boyce said.
Even though Marshall is graduating after this year, he has thoughts about the program’s future and hopes it becomes stronger because of his efforts. And he has his eyes on an appearance at the state meet before he moves on — hopefully with relay teammates joining him at the competition in St. Peters.