MUNSTER — Kyle Adams is reminded every day he walks onto the Munster pool deck of what might have been last February in Indianapolis.
Competing in the IHSAA swim championships as a sophomore, Adams set a Munster school record by swimming the 100-yard breaststroke in 54.71 seconds during the preliminaries. It’s a record that now hangs on the wall in the Jon Jepsen Pool and it was good enough to be seeded third heading into the state finals.
Adams came back for the final race and slipped down to a sixth-place tie with Jack McCurdy from Carroll as both swimmers hit the wall at 55.99 seconds. The pair shared the same podium stand during the medal presentation.
“It was really tough and it’s something that I use as motivation,” Adams said. “It was quite the meet. I kept thinking that maybe I did something wrong. I know for a fact that I’m not going to tie anyone at state again this year.”
Adams was back at it again on Thursday night, winning the 100 breaststroke by more than four seconds in 130-50 dual-meet win against Valparaiso. The junior finished at 58.49 while sophomore teammate Fenry Zhou finished in second place at 1:02.77. Adams added meet victories in the 200 medley relay (1:37.16), 50 free (21.87) and 200 free relay (1:30.67).
“Kyle is off to the best start we’ve seen him now in his third year in the program,” Munster coach Matt Pavlovich said. “He’s been training day in and day out and he’s been able to provide leadership.”
It’s a task that Adams is up for after what he deems was a disappointing finish to his sophomore season. He’s embraced the role of being an upperclassmen leader and it’s showing in his approach to the sport.
“I have more responsibility now,” Adams said. “Before I could just kind of coast through the season. I feel a lot more respected now as an upperclassman. I have good relations with my younger teammates. I can talk to them and help guide them.”
Adams is also starting to turn heads at the next level. According to the junior, both Purdue and Iowa have shown interest and offered Adams.
“I have to admit that it’s pretty cool to have these schools interested,” Adams said. “We’ll see where that goes as the season goes on.”