Getting to Know

Published 8:37 am Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Mt. Hermon School’s Kalei Hughes

Mt. Hermon School’s Kalei Hughes is currently a three-sport athlete. The senior plays basketball, softball and track and field. Hughes also played football her eighth-grade year.
Hughes throws the javelin, shot put and discus in track and field.
In basketball, Hughes plays point guard and shooting guard. She has been a first-team player pretty much every year.
In softball, Hughes has been a first-team all-district catcher every year she has played.
In track and field, Hughes made the podium at the Class B state meet after being third in the shot put with a throw of 29-feet, 6-inches. That same year, she was sixth in the javelin at 107-2.
When Hughes played football, she was on the defensive line.
“Kalei is a wonderful young lady,” Mt. Hermon basketball coach Mary McGinnis said. “She has shown great leadership on a young team. She has been a total pleasure to coach.”

What do you enjoy most about playing your sports?
It keeps your mind occupied. It makes you strive to be your best. It keeps your grades up. It keeps confidence up. If you’re playing good, you get good confidence and you’ve got fans everywhere. I love how the little kids, third through fifth, they’ll come up to me, ‘hey Kalei, I wanna be like you and stuff.’ That makes me feel good.

What do you like best about being a student athlete?
Student athlete makes you focus. It gets you ready for college. It’s kind of like a job. It gets you ready for a job. It’s always a job. When you’re on the court, you have a job to do and if you don’t do it, you don’t win. It’s just a job and it gets you ready for the real world.

Who has been the most influential person in your school sports career? Why?
My grandma (Linda Hughes) and my mom (Dewanna Hughes). They’ve always pushed me to be my best and if it wasn’t for them two, I don’t know where I’d be. I don’t think I’d be playing ball at the top level I am.

Who is your favorite athlete? Why?
NBA Hall of Fame player and current Charlotte Hornets chairman Michael Jordan. He even played when he was sick. That inspired me to play ball. Before I came to Mt. Hermon, I had never played basketball and I came to Mt. Hermon and they were like, ‘try out.’ I was like, ‘ok, I will.’ About that time, I heard the quote he missed 100 percent of the shots you don’t take and the person who said that was Michael Jordan. I was like, ‘I’m going to take my shot,’ and it turns out, I was pretty good.

Favorite team?
Alabama Crimson Tide.

Best thing about living in Washington Parish?
The community. It’s so small and everybody is willing to help. You need something, it’s right there. We’re all family around here. That’s what most I like about it.