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A year ago, Malvern's Kelsi Hulit competed at the state meet in the discus, finishing a spot away from the podium in ninth place.
Determined to better her result, the junior has worked hard during the offseason, not only on her technique, but also in the weight room.
The effort paid off this past weekend as Hulit finished sixth in the discus at the 2017 State Track and Field Championships.
Competing just outside Jesse Owens Stadium on the campus of The Ohio State University, Hulit looked a bit nervous on her first two attempts, which resulted in a foul and a throw of 105'1.
Needing a big number in her final prelim attempt to reach the finals, Hulit came through with a heave of 126'5.
She was unable to better the throw in the finals (121'10, 117'9, foul), but her third throw was good enough for a podium spot and All-Ohio honors.
Hulit came back a couple of hours later to compete in the shot, where she placed ninth with a throw of 39'11.25.
"I'm not sure why, but I was very nervous on my first throw and fouled," commented Hulit. "On my second throw, I'm thinking I can't mess this up, and I throw 105', and messed it up. On my third throw, I told myself it was now or never, and I threw 126'. I wasn't happy with it, but it got me into the finals in sixth. My throws in the finals were not what I wanted.
"It feels amazing to be an All-Ohioan. I'd like to thank the Malvern community, my parents for always supporting me, my sister for always being there, and my friends.
"My coaches have been great. Coach (Jeremy) Maher keeps me calm, Coach (Brett) Lee and Coach Paul (Snopel) are there for me all the time, and Coach Renee (Barrino) literally keeps us all intact. They all mean a lot to me."
Hulit holds the school record in both the discus (139'2) and shot (41').
She has put together a phenomenal junior campaign. Hulit was the league champion in both throwing events, and won district titles in the shot and discus. She went on to place second in the discus and third in the shot at regionals.
"This has been a amazing season for Kelsi," noted Head Coach Jeremy Maher. "We return home from the state meet with two All-Ohio athletes. Kelsi has been a team leader this season, and we couldn't be more proud of her. Malvern track is on the upswing because of her, and we hope to continue to grow and improve."