PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Brown women’s swimming & diving head coach Kate Kovenock has announced the hiring of Niko Fantakis as an assistant coach to the program on Thursday.
Fantakis comes to College Hill from Duke where he was an assistant coach for the past two season. With the Blue Devils, Fantakis guided the women’s team to its largest point total all-time at the 2018 ACC Championships. In his two seasons, the program totaled 129 NCAA ‘B’ cuts, 40 school records, and two All-American swimming performances.
“I am incredibly appreciative and enthusiastic about this amazing opportunity to join the Brown swimming and diving family,” Fantakis said. “It became clear early on in the process that coach Kovenock and I share many of the same values which made this a perfect fit as we move the program forward to new heights. I will always cherish these last two years and the mentorship of Dan Colella, Dawn Kane, and Doak Finch. The future is bright in Providence and I can’t wait to begin this journey with such an impressive group of student-athletes!”
Prior to Duke, Fantakis completed his collegiate career in the pool at Connecticut College. He swam for the Camels for three seasons before taking on the role of a student assistant coach as a senior. Under his guidance, the men’s and women’s teams both earned top 20 finishes at the 2016 NCAA Div. III Championships.
While at Connecticut College, Fantakis received The Andrew Chait ’82 Service Award in recognition of his service and commitment to the Department of Athletics. He graduated in 2016 with degrees in economics and sociology.
In addition to his time spent as a student assistant coach, Fantakis developed his extensive coaching experience at numerous camps. He served as an assistant coach and head counselor at the Duke Swim Camp and helped oversee the Blue Devils’ club program in 2015. Fantakis also served as an assistant coach at the Longhorn Swim Camp and the Peak Performance Swim Camp.
A native of Westfield, Mass., Fantakis attended Westfield High School, where he served as a New England Swimming athlete representative and a YMCA Swimming National Committee athlete representative.
“I am thrilled to welcome Niko to our coaching staff,” Kovenock said. “Without question, his time coaching and recruiting in the ACC will serve him well as he makes the move to Brown women’s swimming & diving and the Ivy League. But what I’m most excited about is the type of coach Niko is on a daily basis. Thoughtful, caring, and purpose-driven, he has a first-hand understanding of what it takes to mentor bright student-athletes while moving a team forward in a competitive conference.”
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