RB freshman swims for state


Ana Nava, Staff reporter

Hailey Vleck has long held a passion for swimming. From learning to swim as a baby to later on taking lessons in Village Field Club and Academy Bullets, she soon advanced the passion she held for the sport and took on the challenge to swim competitively during her first year at RB. Swimming, as demanding as it was, taught and aided her as she grew with it. 

“I like the competition. It helps me as a person to schedule and manage my time well. It helps me make new friends,” Vleck said. “It’s calming to me.”

Vleck for a long time felt Caeleb Dressel, an American Professional Swimmer, was someone who always inspired her. After hearing his story, during a speech in person, she learned of how his passion for swimming didn’t happen till his later teen years made a connection to her own story. From a young age, Vleck did not always know she would have a connection with the sport. She grew bored of it and went on to try other sports. But after turning ten she went back to swimming and tried out Village Field Club that would soon bring back her love for swimming. She tried Academy Bullets after and continued on to swim at RB. 

“His speech was really inspiring to me and to watch him at the Olympics really did inspire me,” Vleck said. 

Making it to State was Vleck’s goal. Her time at sectionals would determine if she made it and like the rest of her teammates, she pushed herself till the very last second. After hitting the wall, she looked at the scoreboard and heard the sound of her teammates cheering and knew she had done it. Traveling to state, she had gone with her other teammates that made it to sectionals along with her parents and Dr. Freytas.

“I remember being a little nervous but more excited than anything. I was so happy that I had even made it to that point, so I didn’t put that much pressure on myself. Having the girls on the RB swim team also helped me, they were all there to cheer and they were so excited for me,” Vleck said. 

At State, Vleck broke her own personal record in Freshman/Sophomore 100 Free along with the Varsity 100 Free, Varsity 200 Free, and Freshman/Sophomore 200 Free. “One of my best friends from OPRF was in the lane next to me, so having her there the whole race pushed me to go really fast,” Vleck said.

For next season, Vleck hopes to continue the same as she was this year. 

“I feel like I’m going in with the same mind set. I came into this season wanting to try my best and going into sophomore season I really want to try my best and do my best. And as long as I put my all in and even if I don’t have the best outcome I’m still proud of what I do as long as I try my best,” Vleck said.