EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

December 1, 2012

Around the Horn with Brooks soccer star Amelia Hulshult

Michael Muldoon
mmuldoon@eagletribune.com

---- — She plans on trying to make her college team as a walk-on, but if that doesn’t work out, Amelia Hulshult certainly went out on top.

The senior from Salem posted three straight shutouts in the New England Prep A field hockey tourney to lead Brooks to the title.

Hulshult is following in the athletic footsteps of her parents. Her mother, Judy LaPlume Hulshult, smashed the area javelin record back in 1982 at Salem High with a 148-10 throw, which is 13 feet further than anyone else ever threw the old javelin. She was a second-team All-Big 10 field hockey player at Ohio State and is now a triathlete.

Her father, Dr. Eugene Hulshult, a dentist with a practice in Concord, N.H., was a scholarship football lineman for the Buckeyes.

Amelia talked about winning the New England title, playing freshman year with a broken finger and her love of abstract painting in this week’s Around the Horn.

What was it like winning the New England Prep A title? “It was awesome. It was a perfect ending to my four years at Brooks. My whole team rushed to me. You can’t describe it. It was awesome.”

Did you enjoy the pressure of an overtime game in the championship game? “It’s good. Our team does really well in high pressure situations. That last goal with 30 seconds left was a perfect way to end. Pressure just builds up, but then a giant sigh of relief.”

You must be pretty proud of three straight shutouts in the playoffs? “Shutouts are awesome. I think I had 13 this year. I can’t take all of the credit. My defense is tremendous. Emilie Klein has been with me all four years at center back.”

Were you always a goalie? “I came in as a goalie. Last year, so many people were hurt so I had to play in the field. It was very different. I’m glad I was back in net.”

What’s it like playing for such a young coach in former Brooks and North Carolina star Jaime Gilbert, who is just 26? “She inspires all of us just because she was so successful. She really knows how to connect with us and motivates us. We always had fun with her.”

Do you play any other sports? “I’m captain of softball. I think I like soccer the most but I love softball. In the winter I do yoga and train. It’s a nice break.”

What’s been the lowest point of your career? “Last year I had some health issues but those cleared up. And freshman year I broke my hand, my pinky, but I figured out how to manipulate my glove so I could play.”

Are you looking at any schools? “I got into three already: West Virginia, Arkansas and Penn State. I’ve always wanted to go to a bigger school. I went to Pike School (in Andover) and Brooks. I wanted to experience something different.

“I’m also looking at Clemson, Va. Tech, URI, UNH and UConn. I don’t think I can give up soccer. I’d try out for the team. If not, I’d be happy with club soccer.”

Besides sports, do you do anything else at Brooks? “I’m on the yearbook committee and environmental club. I take an independent course in art. I’m passionate equally about art, mostly painting, and sports.”

Do you have a favorite painting? “Last year, school had an art exhibit. I got a lot of comments on one painting. People offered to pay for it but I’m protective of it. I have a few hung up at the house ... abstract paintings.”

Are you from an athletic family? “Jenna Palmisano is my cousin, she plays field hockey and lacrosse at Central Catholic. My brother, Andrew Hulshult, is a sophomore at Brooks who plays football and wrestling and baseball but he has a knee injury in football so he’ll be out for a while. My mom and dad both had scholarships to Ohio State, my dad, Eugene Hulshult, for football and my mom, Kelly LaPlume Hulshult of Salem, for field hockey.”

What’s your dream job? “I want to major in landscape architecture. It would be nice to design green space.”

Do you have a nickname? “Hulls because as a freshman there was another Amelia on the team.”

Do you have any pets? “Two cats, Louis and Piper.”

If you were named headmaster, what’s the first thing you’d do? “I wouldn’t want all the games at the same time so people could support other teams.”

HULLS’ FAVORITES

Group or singer: Taylor Swift, I like country

Song: Same Love by Macklemore

Book: I like all of Sarah Dessen’s books

Movie: Think Like a Man

TV show: House

Athlete: Gronk

Food: Gluten-free pizza at Balducci’s

Car: I’m happy with my car now, a Nissan Sentra

Restaurant: Panera’s

Course in school: Latin with Mrs. (Deborah) Davies and Short Stories with Mr. (Dean) Charpentier