Monthly Awards

Athlete of the Month - December 2012 Kyla Houck - Modesto-Stanislaus Water Polo Club/Johansen HS

I would like to nominate Kyla Houck for the Athlete of the month. I am her father and her biggest fan. She is a player for Johansen High as well as Modesto-Stanislaus Water Polo club.

Kyla started water polo her freshman year of high school without knowing anything about the sport. She picked up the game quickly, and became a freshman starter for the Johansen JV team. She fell in love with water polo, and joined the Modesto-Stanislaus Water Polo club team that winter. For someone brand new to the sport, she emerged as a force to be reckoned with.

Winter turned into spring, then summer and Kyla found herself playing in the Junior Olympics on the 16u (16 and under) team at 14-years-old. Kyla began as a starter for Johansen varsity team her sophomore year and every year since. She has continued to play in the Junior Olympics for both the 18u and 16u MSWP teams each of the last two years; she only turned 17 after the 2012 games.

She has won 3 conference championships and earned all-league honors each time. In the Cal-State games, Kyla has won the gold as well as 2 silver medals. She was voted MVP of the conference her senior year, 2012.

Her primary position is 2m defender and at 5'3" & 120 lbs., her opponent usually has the advantage of size and reach. Yet, with her agility and awareness she is among the best at creating turnovers. The focus of her game is defense; however, she ranks among the top 20 of total goals scored, across the lifetime of a very successful high school program.

Overall, Kyla has shown herself to be a very dedicated and talented athlete, but what really sets her story apart, is her ability to excel simultaneously at academics. She has been enrolled in AP classes throughout her high school career. Her weighted GPA is 4.10 and she is ranked within the top 3% of her class. Physics is one of her favorite subjects and she is planning to major in physical sciences.

Kyla is an inspiration to her family and actively recruits both players and fans to the sport of water polo. Following in her footsteps, her little sister led the JV team with 112 goals this year. An amazing example of sportsmanship, she has close friends throughout the other high school teams and amiably congratulates competitors for good plays. All bias aside, I believe you'll agree that Kyla Houck is a solid contender for Athlete of the Month. Thank you, Dean Houck.

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