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Trinity Academy sophomore Kendall Kilgore will be compete at the Class5-1A championships this weekend. Photographed at the Wichita Swim Club on Wednesday.

Trinity Academy sophomore Kendall Kilgore will be compete at the Class5-1A championships this weekend. Photographed at the Wichita Swim Club on Wednesday. Fernando Salazar/ The Wichita Eagle | Buy this photo

Getting to know Kendall Kilgore

Published May 22 at 5:18 p.m. | Last updated May 22 at 5:19 p.m.

Kendall Kilgore

Trinity Academy swimming

Kilgore, a sophomore, will compete in the 50-yard freestyle, 100 freestyle, 200 freestyle relay and 400 freestyle relay at the Class 5-1A swimming meet on Friday and Saturday at Capitol Federal Natatorium in Topeka. Kilgore finished second in the 50 free as a freshman, just seven-tenths of a second behind her sister, Chesley, who has graduated. Kilgore also was part of the winning 200 free relay in 2013.

How was it finishing first and second with Chesley, in adjacent lanes, in the 50 free at state last year?

“It was really awesome. Her getting gold and for me to follow what she got, was amazing.… It was crazy. I can’t even explain it. It was awesome to find out that we were first and second. It was mind blowing. We hugged and celebrated together.”

How was it swimming with Chesley, who is competing at Georgetown, all season in 2013?

“It was a great experience. It was memorable swimming with her. She was a really strong leader of our team, and a great role model for me. She helped me to fight for my goals and helped me to be positive in the pool and outside of it. She helped me to be strong and just have a really positive outlook on swimming and everything.”

Do you ever feel pressure, especially since Chesley and your brother, Christian, who also swam at Georgetown, were so successful?

“I have a little bit of pressure, but they’ve helped me to stay confident. I heard a quote from Derek Hough on Dancing with the Stars where he said, ‘pressure doesn’t exist, we create it for ourselves.’ That was kind of cool to hear and know that we do create it for ourselves. Christian and Chesley have always been there to just give me love and they’re great supporters for me.”

Can you tell me about your team?

“We have a young, growing group and everyone is really excited and positive. Everybody is very, very, very uplifting to everybody and encouraging. And when anyone is up for a race, everyone goes to the end of the pool and goes crazy for them. We have a great future for the next few years.”

Since your team is so young, with only freshmen and sophomores, do you need to be a leader?

“Since the sophomores are the oldest on our little team, yeah, we do need to be leaders for everyone else. We pray together before every meet. Put God before everyone else.… I usually (lead prayer). I feel like as one of the oldest on our team, that I should lead it. I feel that God’s calling me to lead.”

What do you want to accomplish this weekend?

“I want to be able to get best times, that’s my biggest thing. I didn’t get any best times at state last year, so that would be pretty cool. There’s going to be a lot of competition, so win or lose, to God be the glory.”