by Jackie Thompson
She’s been swimming competitively for nearly ten years now and doesn’t plan to stop anytime soon. Senior Holly Hulett has been a crucial part of the BHS swim team since her debut freshmen year. This year, however, she’s determined to make it to state.
“I think we have really shot this year!” Hulett says. “This is the largest team I’ve ever been a part of at BHS and we’ve got a lot of talented swimmers.” With 29 girls and 20 boys, the BHS swim team is definitely the largest it has been in years. The team is coached by Rob Johnson and Karen Hulett—that’s right, Holly’s mom. But the cliché horrors of having a parent who doubles as a coach thankfully don’t apply here. Hulett says that her mother is actually a pretty easy-going coach, so long as you don’t use the word “can’t.”
“If she catches anyone saying it, she’ll make the whole team do wall-sits for two minutes,” Hulett says. But wall-sits are nothing compared to the demanding practice schedule she adheres to each week. On top of being a member of the BHS swim team, Hulett also swims for the Dayton Raiders. That means getting up at 4am for before-school practices, and enduring a strict on-land training regime complete with weight-training and jogging. When I asked her if she was strong enough to beat me up, she replied that she totally could. I don’t doubt it. All that exercise sounds miserable to me, but it didn’t seem to bother Hulett in the slightest. It seemed worth it for her, if it meant she could swim.
Hulett’s best events are the 100m back and the 100m fly, with times of 58:06 and 57:79 in each respectively. But even after ten years, swimming hasn’t grown monotonous. Hulett says she still gets nervous before big meets, but the country Pandora station does help soothe her nerves. She’s yet to commit to a single college, but she aspires to swim at West Point. However, with the school’s difficult application process, Cleveland State might be the path she’ll choose instead. Either way, Hulett doesn’t plan to stop swimming anytime soon. To the all the aspiring swimmers out there she offers the Finding Nemo quote: “Just keep swimming.”