We are very fortunate to have an extremely talented and hardworking coaching staff. All of the coaches work with all of the age groups, so swimmers will have access to all of the coaches.
Questions, comments or concerns regarding team philosophy, its application to a swimmer, or coaching activities should be directed to our Coach Liaison.
The coaching staff, under supervision of the Coach Liaison, determines the entries for each meet. These entries will be based on a combination of factors including recorded times, practice attendance, the number of swimmers in a given age group, and team needs. It is the team’s desire that swimmers become well rounded, reaching a certain proficiency level in all strokes. Therefore, swimmers may be asked to occasionally to swim strokes that are not necessarily their favorites. Swimming these "off strokes" helps the swimmer keep track of his/her time improvements for all strokes during the whole season.
The coaching staff chooses each relay team. Coaches look at recorded times, participation, starts and finishes, and team needs. The A and B relays will be chosen for competitiveness. The C relays focus on participation. The desire is to have all swimmers participate on a relay team if possible. In our larger age groups, swimmers may not be able to participate in a relay in every meet.
Meet the Coaches
Kathryn “KJ” Kroetch - Head Coach
KJ will graduate in May 2013 from Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts, where she majored in Art History and Architectural Studies, with a minor in Medieval Studies. While at Tufts, KJ swam for the Jumbos, competing in all the backstroke and butterfly events. She also was a captain of the co-ed Club Water Polo team, which placed fifth at Nationals in 2012. KJ graduated from Acalanes High School in 2009, where she swam and played varsity basketball, and was a captain of both teams. She has a long history in recreational and competitive swimming and coached previously at Springbrook before coming to the Rats in 2011. She looks forward to the 2013 season and working with each swimmer and their family to make this season the most exciting and fun one yet! Let’s go Rats!!
Greg Harper - Assistant Head Coach
Hi! I'm Greg Harper and I'm excited to be a part of the RATS coaching staff this again this season. The last two summers it was very fun to be a part of the REST community! I have been a lifelong swimmer since I joined Indian Valley Swim Team at age 4, and then I joined the Walnut Creek Aquabears at age 8, where I swam for ten years. I graduated from Las Lomas in 2010, where I ran varsity cross country and was a varsity swimmer. I currently attend UC Berkeley where I swam for 2 years. I look forward to the opportunity to share my knowledge of swimming with all of you and have a blast while doing it! It's going to be a really fun and successful summer and I can't wait to see everyone on the pool deck! GO RATS!
Michela "Kella" Crain - Coach
I am Michela Crain. Most people call me Kella. I started swimming when I was three as a little devil on the Sun Devils swim team. I joined Rudgear Estates Swim Team when I was five years old. I loved swimming for the RATS for 14 years and I swam for Carondelet varsity in high school. I love coaching at Rudgear Estates. I cherish each memory and the friendships I have formed. I just finished my college degree at Chico State University. My major was child development with a minor in music. This past year I had two internships working with children who have special needs at a preschool. Working with these children truly has changed my life. I am really excited for this upcoming swim season and to a great successful summer!! Let’s Go RATS!
Rory Stewart - Coach
Hi fellow Rats, my name is Rory Stewart. I would like to start off by saying how excited I am for the upcoming season. This will be my second year serving as a coach, but I swam on Rudgear Estates for nine years. I started swimming when I was four and migrated to the Rats when I was nine and loved every summer since. I currently attend Chapman University where I study Business Administration and swim on the school’s team. I train for the 200-yard Backstroke, the 200-yard Individual Medley, and swim the Butterfly leg for the team’s medley relay. I graduated from Las Lomas where I competed on the swim team and played Water Polo for all four years. I have many goals for the team this summer including working towards improving everyone’s techniques while having an awesome time in the process. I cannot wait to return to the Rudgear pool and to coach both old and new faces. This will surely be a successful and exciting season! Go Rats!
Kelley Crane - Coach
Hi Rats! I’m Kelley Crane and am so excited to be returning this year as a coach! I started swimming when I was 6 on Rats and then went on to be on many different teams including year-round swimming. I currently just finished my sophomore year at University of Nevada, Reno where I am a Public Relations major. Before that I went to Las Lomas high school where I swam varsity for 3 years. I cannot wait for another fantastic summer filled with great swim times and fun!
Riley Loventhal - Junior Coach
Hello Rats! My name is Riley Loventhal and I am very excited to be working with you all this summer. This is my second year as a junior coach for Rudgear Estates and I’ve been a part of the Rats swim team since 2003 when I was 8 years old. I am finishing up my senior year at Las Lomas and am looking forward to attending college in the fall. I played both water polo and lacrosse all four years at Las Lomas and am excited to participate in my last season as a recreational swimmer. I can’t wait to return to the pool deck and work with you all this summer!
Connor Thompson - Junior Coach
Hello, my name is Connor Thompson. I am a senior at Las Lomas High School. Swimming since the age of four, I have very deep roots and a lot of pride to return as a junior coach for this team that is so very special to me. I am currently a varsity swimmer, as well as varsity water polo player. This is my second year junior coaching for the Rats and I couldn't be more excited to help bring this amazing team to another great season. I’m looking forward to meeting all of the parents and your kids on the pool deck. GO RATS!
Maddie Dautel - Junior Coach
Hello fellow Rats! I’m Maddie Dautel and I am about to start my 14th year as a swimmer on Rudgear Estates, and 2nd year as a junior coach. I am a senior at Las Lomas High School, where I am captain of the varsity swim team and very involved in leadership, as Student Body Vice President. My favorite event is 100 breaststroke, of which I am a proud county qualifier! I have enjoyed spending my summers at the pool for a very long time and I am really looking forward to having a fun and successful summer! Go Rats!
Sarah Ward - Junior Coach
I have been swimming with the Rudgear Estates swim team ever since I was a Polliwog, and I am so excited to return as a Junior Coach for the 2013 season. I am a junior at Las Lomas where I swim and play waterpolo. I am anxious to see every new and returning Rat and help them achieve their goals and develop a love for swimming the way that I do. I plan to help swimmers develop their own goals and then work to achieve them. I can't wait to see you all at the pool, share my passion for swimming and make our 2013 season a great time for us all. GO RATS!!
Emily Powell - Junior Coach
I am super excited to return as a junior coach for the Rats. I’ve swam for the Rats ever since i was a polliwog! My best stroke has always been freestyle and just recently I've started breaststroke. This is my second year on the Las Lomas Swim Team. For me one of the best parts of being on the Rats is making close friends and getting to know the coaches our swimmers and the families. Spirit and having fun is very important to me and I know that this season is going to be fantastic!
Savannah Louie - Junior Coach
My name is Savannah Louie and I am currently a freshman at Southern Methodist University in Texas, where I'm majoring in Journalism. I graduated from Las Lomas last spring, where I swam Varsity for three years. Besides swimming for LL, I’ve swam for both recreational and competitive teams for a total of 12 years. I began swimming for the Rats last summer and I loved it so much I decided to try and do more by becoming part of the coaching staff. I'm super excited for my first year as a Junior Coach, and I can’t wait for the upcoming swim season! Go Rats!!
Lucas Dhaliwal - Junior Coach
Hello Rats! My name is Lucas Dhaliwal and I can't wait to work with all of you this summer on the pool deck. I have been swimming on the Rats team since I was 8 years old. Currently, I am finishing my senior year at Las Lomas where I swam and played waterpolo all four years. I plan on attending Diablo Valley College in the fall and continuing my training as part of their swim team. I’m really excited about being a junior coach this coming swim season and I can't wait to get back out on the pool deck to meet you and your families! GO RATS!