Kylie Wassell, 18

Goalkeeper

Her story: Kylie had just turned 17 the day before she started her first game as a freshman goalkeeper at UNLV. And she recorded a shutout—one of three she had in 2010 on her way to a 1.45 goals-against average. Kylie seems to do everything at an accelerated rate. She graduated from Bonanza High a year early, at age 16, and still managed to be her class valedictorian. At UNLV, she’s sustained her scholastic prowess while polishing her goalkeeping skills. UNLV’s season recently ended with her being voted to the Capital One Academic All-District VIII second team, thanks to a 4.0 grade-point average and a .95 goals-against average (including six shutouts).

School: UNLV, sophomore

Extras: The secondary education major loves chess. When she was younger, she played in chess tournaments often and, at one point, was ranked second among girls in Nevada. But now she only plays for fun, often against online opponents via her iPhone. “One day I hope to again play chess competitively and enter tournaments,” she says. “And starting a chess club for kids is also a goal of mine in the near future.” As a team, the Rebels have hosted many soccer clinics for children, including those with After-School All-Stars and Special Olympics. She and a few teammates also recently helped out with the E-Soccer league, which mixes typical children and those with special needs. Kylie hopes the Rebels will soon be able to work with their own E-Soccer team.

Where she’ll be doing in 10 years: “I see myself having completed my master’s degree in secondary education and giving back to the Las Vegas community by teaching math at a local high school and maybe even overseeing a chess club there. I would also like to be responsible for coaching a soccer team and developing younger, upcoming players while continuing to play soccer myself.”

What they’re saying about her: “Kylie is the type of kid that people always have positive things to say about,” UNLV coach Jennifer Klein says. “Her work ethic is unbelievable, and that was evident [when] she graduated high school early. She is always doing things to improve herself—a kid who is motivated to get better.”

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