Wildcats News · Wildcat Boys Swim Coaches Selected

We are thrilled to announce the expansion of our Wildcat high school athletic offerings this upcoming winter with the introduction of Boys Swimming! The 2019-2020 inaugural Boys Swim season will be the first of many that our student athletes will compete as a sanctioned Wildcat athletic program, and we are excited to provide our school community this opportunity!

It is our pleasure to announce the coaching staff that will lead our WHS Boys’ Swim team and build our newest Wildcat program:

HEAD COACH, JEFF HACKLER – Throughout childhood and his early adult life, Jeff lived in the water.  It started as a member of his town’s summer league team outside of Baltimore and ended after a successful collegiate career at the University of Minnesota.  Throughout his career Jeff focused primarily in the breaststroke events.  While at the U he was an All American, Big Ten champion, and a finalist at the 2000 US Olympic Team Trials.  He was also a 2 time Georgia High School state champion in the 100 breaststroke in 1998 and 1999.  After college, Jeff joined the financial services industry and has been a financial advisor for the past 12 years.  He married his wife Kelsey after college and they have two boys in 7th and 4th grades in Waconia.  He has been a coach at Crusher CrossFit in Waconia for the past 3 years and is looking forward to this new chapter and opportunity to help build the Waconia Boys Swim and Dive program from the ground up.


ASSISTANT COACH, KELSEY HACKLER – Kelsey has always had a passion for the sport of swimming from an early age. Her mom was her first swim coach at the age of six and she believes she fed that love for the sport and for coaching.  She swam in high school for Watertown-Mayer and following graduation received a scholarship to swim for UW-Green Bay. After two years, she transferred to the University of Minnesota where she became an NCAA All-American and a Big Ten Champion. Before retiring from swimming, she competed at the 2000 US Olympic Team Trials in the 100 and 200 breaststroke.  After her swimming days, Kelsey began her coaching journey. She was hired as the Head Age Group coach at Edina Swim Club and she also served as the Aquatics Director and Head Coach at Woodhill Country Club. She then took some time off to devote her time to being a mom to her two boys. Kelsey has now been coaching the Kids and Teens program at Crusher CrossFit in Waconia for the past 3 years. She loves what that has taught her, especially knowing the strong foundation it builds.  She is excited to offer her knowledge and experience to enhance the swimmers athletic performance as they mature.

As a pair, Jeff and Kelsey are “thrilled to lead this new team in Waconia”.  “After almost 16 years of marriage, two kids and a couple of moves, we have learned at least a little about each other.”  They also shared that. “we know that where one of us has a weakness, the other has a strength to offset it”.  Between the two of them, they have almost 35 years of actual swimming experience, plus years of coaching, teaching one on one lessons, and just being active in the sport.  Jeff and Kelsey stated, “we are excited to share our knowledge and experience with the student athletes and grow this program into what we know it can be”. Congratulations and welcome to Jeff and Kelsey Hackler! 

7th- 12th grade student athletes interested in joining the inaugural Boys Swim program can register now for this winter activity at Waconiaathletics.com! In addition, stay tuned for the official “meet and greet” and student information meetings coming up this September with Coach Hackler! Enjoy the remainder of your summer!