After Electric Junior Season, Austin Swim Club’s Sarah Kutz Commits to Rice

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Sarah Kutz of the Austin Swim Club in Austin, Texas will be staying in-state, but heading 150 miles east, to swim for Rice University in Houston beginning in the fall of 2020.

I chose Rice University because of the amazing combination of academics and athletics in addition to the team’s encouraging atmosphere and phenomenal coaching staff! I could not be more grateful for my friends, family, and Austin Swim Club coaches for supporting me through this process. Can’t wait to be an Owl!

Kutz attends Texas high school swimming power Vandegrift High School in Austin, though she doesn’t swim for the high school team. She is, however, an award-winning oboist in the school’s band, earning an area audition in her junior year.

Kutz is a versatile swimmer that has no real weak stroke.

Best Times in Yards:

  • 50 free – 24.61
  • 100 free – 52.42
  • 200 free – 1:54.01
  • 500 free – 5:02.40
  • 100 back – 57.67
  • 200 back – 2:02.47
  • 100 breast – 1:05.22
  • 200 breast – 2:18.18
  • 100 fly – 55.33
  • 200 fly – 2:00.88
  • 200 IM – 2:02.57
  • 400 IM – 4:21.44

At the collegiate level, she projects best as a butterflier and IMer. In February, she scored 3 titles at the South Texas LSC Age Group Swimming Short Course Championships (STAGS) meet in the 100 fly, 200 fly, and 200 back, and added 4 more top-4 finishes. After a few stagnant seasons, she made marvelous drops as a junior. For example: in the 100 fly, she hadn’t been a best time since October of 2016 (58.78). Between December of 2018 and March of 2019, however, she dropped 2-and-a-half seconds in that event to sit at her current best time. She dropped more than 5 seconds from her best in the 200 fly, and a second-and-a-half in the 200 IM.

All of this came in the season after a coaching change following Olympian Brendan Hansen’s resignation as the club’s head coach. The club is now lead by Chris Coghill.

She joins a Rice program that has had success in the butterfly events: last season, they had 5 swimmers rank in the top 11 in Conference USA in the 100 fly, all of whom were freshmen or sophomores and should still be on campus when Kutz arrives. That group was led by sophomore Brittany Bui, who swam a 54.6 to lead the Owls last season. They’ve been arguably even better in the 200 fly, with 4 of the top 6 swimmers in the conference in that event last season. Kutz’s best time would’ve placed her in the A-final at the Conference USA Championships.

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3 years ago

Sarah is a very tallented swimmer. I always liked watching her swim. Her fly and breaststroke technique are very good. With a better strength program she will improve significantly in college. Good luck to ex-Nitro kid.

3 years ago

The article implies Sarah career was stagnant under Hansen and one he resigned she started improving immensely? The articles I read in the past indicated Hansen did good job with Austin Swim Club swimmers? Not sure what to think about this….There are many reasons behind swimmers improvement but implying lack of improvement was Hansen’s fault seems a bit harsh?

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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