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Sibling swimmers set marks
Brothers and sisters swimming on the North Whidbey Aquatic Club team is a common occurrence.
However, when there are two brothers and a sister who have come up through the ranks in NWAC meets for a number of years and are now members of the Oak Harbor High School varsity team, that’s something special.
The Hu siblings, senior John, sophomore Price and sister Ciara, are top competitors for the Wildcats winning events at the high school level while continuing to compete, and win, in NWAC meets.
Last year John Hu won the class 4A state championship in the 200-meter individual medley and has high hopes of continuing his career at the collegiate level.
“My future plan is to put my application in at Stanford and hopefully I’ll get accepted,” he said.
Swimming in the Pac-10 at such a prestigious school may be a lofty goal for some people, but Hu has the grade-point average and the talent to be a major asset to the Cardinal swim program.
Hu said he has been swimming since he was in the third grade and will be starting his fourth season on the Oak Harbor varsity team next month.
Being a state champion was a big thrill for the 17-year-old, but he said he has had many other fond memories during his career.
“Last year, I qualified for the junior nationals in the 400 individual medley,” he said.
Price Hu, the sophomore member of the family, said he doesn’t remember how many years he has been swimming.
“A lot and all of them have been with the NWAC before I started at the high school,” he said.
The soft-spoken Hu said he isn’t very good at setting goals, but said he just tries to do whatever he can for the team.
“The best thing I’ve done so far was placing third in the zones in the 200 butterfly,” he said.
The “baby” of the bunch, 14-year-old Ciara Hu, said she began swimming in the second grade and has been a member of NWAC for six or seven years.
“This is my first year swimming on the high school team,” she said.
As far as competing with the club, Hu said it’s a lot of fun going to the age group meets and just being with her friends.
“Right now my goal is to make zones and I’m really close,” she said.
NWAC coach Neil Romney said swimming is a great family sport.
“What happens is you get one kid who starts at a young age and then the siblings accompany that kid to meets,” he said. “They see the competition and say, ‘hey, that looks like fun,’ so you start getting the next kid in the family and then the third and fourth. Sometimes, we’ll have the same family involved for 15 or 20 years.”
Swimming isn’t the only activity the Hu siblings are involved in.
John and Price are both members of the Oak Harbor High School band and Ciara sings with the high school choir.