Big stage, bright stars: Meet the 100-plus school-by-school Scholar-Athletes for 2021

·32 min read

You won’t find a finer group of young people to represent Kansas City than this year’s KC Star Scholar-Athlete high school award-winners.

School-by-school honorees are listed here alphabetically by their high schools. Others nominated from each school are also listed. The nominations came from faculty and staff at each of the 100-plus high schools in the KC Star’s circulation area — the Kansas City metro — earlier this year.

School officials were encouraged to nominate as many as three students from their respective institutions. In the event there are no other nominees noted for a particular school, that school chose to nominate only one person.

All candidates were reviewed thoroughly and the field was narrowed down through three rounds of independent judging by KC Star staffers and prominent members of the community, including players from the Chiefs, Royals, Sporting KC, KC NWSL and the KC Roos. Judges reviewed the nominees’ portfolios for athletic and academic prowess, as well as their community service.

BARSTOW

GRANT HARKINS

A 4.27 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in soccer and one in basketball. On state championship soccer team as a sophomore. Defensive player of the year in soccer as a junior. Chinese National Honor Society. President’s Service Award.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Sage Holmes and Brylee Glenn

BASEHOR-LINWOOD

JENNA ZYDLO

A 3.98 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 17th in a class of 159. Earned four varsity letters in track and field and volleyball and one in powerlifting. UnderArmor All-American watchlist in volleyball. Placed fourth at state in high jump in 2019. National Honor Society. Participated in two plays and two musicals. Participated in Y4KC, a non-profit organization.

College: West Florida

Also nominated: Adell Gore and Luke Miller

BELTON

KYNDAL LEWIS

A 3.95 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 27th in a class of 357. Earned four letters in basketball. Three-time all-conference player. Scored over a 1,000 career points. National Honor Society. Participated in numerous school clubs. Selected Homecoming queen.

College: Eastern Michigan

Also nominated: Ayden Holt

BISHOP MIEGE

PAYTON VERHULST

A 3.67 GPA on a 5.0 scale. Ranked 80th in a class of 167. Earned four varsity letters in basketball and three in volleyball. Naismith High School player of the year in basketball. Kansas Gatorade player of the year in basketball. National Honor Society. Student council executive Mental Health Awareness Club.

College: Louisville

Also nominated: Caroline Gyllenborg and Charles Hill

BISHOP WARD

AISLINN JORGE

A 4.47 GPA on a 5.0 scale. Ranked second in a class of 73. Earned three varsity letters in volleyball. Co-captain senior year. Three-time honorable mention selection in conference. National Honor Society. Senior class president. REACH Rotary Club mentoring program.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Rey Lopez and Stella Subasic

BLUE SPRINGS

BROOKE NIEMANN

A 4.4 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked second in a class of 514. Earned two varsity letters in basketball, one in softball, swimming and track and field. A member of the state basketball semifinalist team. All-conference in the 1,600 meter and 800 meter relays. Secretary for National Honor Society.

College: Arizona

Also nominated: Gwynevere Deterding and Patrick Maloney

BLUE SPRINGS SOUTH

BENJAMIN BRYAN

A 4.26 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked 21st in a class of 437. Earned four varsity letters in football and two in baseball. Three-time academic all-state in football. National Honor Society. Adopt-a-Family volunteer. Habitat for Humanity volunteer. Participated in student government.

College: Lindenwood

Also nominated: Isaiah Frost and McKenna Lester

BLUE VALLEY

ELLE HEMPY

A 4.62 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Three varsity letters in tennis and track and two in wrestling. Three-time state qualifier in track. Finished eighth in conference in tennis senior year. A member of school’s first girls wrestling program. Two-time KCWA academic award in wrestling. National Honor Society. MU Alpha Theta social chair. Invited to Mayor’s UN Day dinner.

College: undecided

Also nominated: none

BLUE VALLEY NORTH

CHRISTINE O’BRIEN

A 4.3 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in tennis. Three-time state qualifier. Doubles and team champion in 2018. Second place in doubles in 2019 and 2020. National Honor Society. Spanish National Honor Society. Selected drum major senior year.

College: University of Redlands

Also nominated: Landon Reeves

BLUE VALLEY NORTHWEST

RILEY BEACH

A 4.48 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in cross country and two in track and field. Kansas 6A state champion in 2017 and runner-up in 2020. First team all-state in track in the 1600 and 3200 meter runs in 2018. Student government president for four years. Science National Honor Society. Special Olympics volunteer.

College: Iowa State

Also nominated: Carolyn Thurlby and Jack Chapman

BLUE VALLEY SOUTHWEST

YASEEN EL-DEMERDASH

A 4.52 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in swimming. Six-time school record holder. Team USA Paralympic swimmer. First Tech Challenge Robotics World Champion. Started Robotics Club at BV Southwest.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Jaylie Hicklin and Emily Ervin

BLUE VALLEY WEST

ADDISON BARNES

A 4.47 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. No class ranking. Earned three varsity letters in swimming. Two-time state champion in the 200 IM and 500 freestyle. Owns seven Blue Valley West school swimming records. Freshman mentor. Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Science National Honor Society.

College: Kansas

Also nominated: Samuel Pankratz and Anna-Katherine Marquette

BONNER SPRINGS

EMILY ASHFORD

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 192. Earned four varsity letters in softball and tennis and two in basketball. A 25-game school record hitting streak in 2018 and 2019. State qualifier in doubles in 2018 and 2019. Participated in student government. Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

College: Kansas City Kansas Community College

Also nominated: William Lara and Keyana Cruse

CENTER

BENJAMIN LAHANN

A 4.64 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 118. Earned four varsity letters in cross country and track and field. Qualified for state in cross country in 2020. All-academic in cross country and track and field. Team captain for 2020-21 Scholar Bowl.

College: USMC-Marines

Also nominated: none

CENTRAL

BRIAN’NA SCHNEIDER

A 3.44 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball and three varsity letters in basketball. Selected second team all-conference in volleyball and basketball. Participated in student government. JROTC.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Walter Taylor IV

DE SOTO

JACKSON MILLER

A 4.09 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked 45th in a class of 257. Earned three varsity letters in football, basketball and baseball. Class 5A player of the year finalist in football. A three-year started in all three sports. Four-year academic letterman. AVID tutor. Volunteer camp assistant.

College: Hutchinson Community College

Also nominated: Carson Sturdy and Brooke Stonestreet

EAST

LITSY FLORES VASGUEZ

A 3.99 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked ninth in a class of 263. Earned four varsity letters in soccer, three in basketball and wrestling. Received a $100 scholarship in a English writing competition. Participated in FFA and a member of Agriculture Club.

College: St. Mary’s

Also nominated: Nejmadin Ahmed and Damion Singhakhoune

EUDORA

JAYLA PIERCE

A 4.35 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in her class. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball, basketball and softball. Made MOKAN all-star team in volleyball. A member of the 2019 and 2020 state qualifying basketball team. Also, reached state in softball. Participated in choir for four years. A member of student government.

College: Rockhurst

Also nominated: Will Schreiner and Colby Lawhorn

EXCELSIOR SPRINGS

ZACALEN LOHMAN

A 3.77 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 28th in a class of 141. Earned four letters in cross country and track and field and two in basketball. Four-time all-state in cross country and team captain for three years. Participated in student government. LINK crew. Nursery director at First United Methodist.

College: Missouri

Also nominated: Madison Krier and Emma Craven

FORT OSAGE

KENDRA SIEFKER

A 4.32 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked fifth in a class of 315. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball and track and field. AVCA player of the week in Missouri. Team records in season and career kills and season and career blocks. 4H president. National honor society. Women’s Ministry. Job shadowing at veterinary clinics.

College: Kansas State

Also nominated: Edward Estepan

GARDNER-EDGERTON

KENDRA WAIT

A 4.4 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked fourth in a class of 399. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball and two in track and field. 2019 Kansas Gatorade player of the year in volleyball. Gates Award. Kansas 6A state champion in the 100 and shot put. National Honor Society. Participated in student government.

College: Creighton

Also nominated: Gus Davis and Quenton Walion

GRAIN VALLEY

KARA EAKER

A 4.52 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked third in a class of 350. Earned four varsity letters in gymnastics. Earned numerous gold medals in various national competitions. National Honor Society.

College: Utah

Also nominated: Cole Keller and Hunter Newsom

GRANDVIEW

REGINALD KIND JR.

A 3.36 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 28th in a class of 228. Three varsity letters in football and track and field and one in basketball. All-state defensive back. All-Metro in football. Member of 2019 track state championship team. Second place at state in 2019 in 800-meter run.

College: North Dakota State

Also nominated: none

HARMON

KENLY NICOLAS-ESTRADA

A 4.02 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked fifth in her class. Earned varsity letters in track. Team captain in track. LINK crew leader. National Honor Society. Community service. 20/20 leadership.

College: Wichita State

Also nominated: Angel Gallardo and Danna Trejo

HARRISONVILLE

HAILEE RICKER

Four-year letterwinner in softball, also ran track. Ranked 50th in class of 217 with 3.736 GPA. All-MRVC three times, including twice first-team. All-district four years, all-region 2020. Holds school records in HRs, steals. Science club president, volunteer.

College: Central Methodist

Also nominated: none

HERITAGE CHRISTIAN

JENNA WRIGHT

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked fourth in a class of 36. Earned four varsity letters in soccer and basketball and one in volleyball. First team all-conference in soccer in 2019. National Honor Society.

College: Dordt University

Also nominated: Ben Fischer and Cassie Koellner

HOGAN PREP

CAMERON MILHOUSE

A 3.18 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 11th in a class of 54. Earned two varsity letters in football. Two-time all-district linebacker. Team captain senior year. Regularly made honor roll while also working part-time job.

College: UMKC

Also nominated: Amarion Dunlap and ShaKeela Baker-Solomon

KANSAS CITY CHRISTIAN

JULIET BARTELS

A 3.99 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in tennis. A four-time member of the state championship teams. Doubles champion in 2021 and doubles runner-up in 2020. Participated in student government. National Honor Society.

College: Kansas State

Also nominated: Owen Ark

KEARNEY

MACKENZIE HOFFMAN

A 3.98 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 16th in a class of 276. Earned four varsity letters in basketball and soccer and two varsity letters in golf. First team all-conference in basketball. Reached state semifinals one season in basketball. Student government vice president. Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Northland CAPS program.

College: Missouri

Also nominated: Alexis Cole and Carter Woods

LANSING

GREYSON WALKER

A 3.92 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 12th in his class. Earned four varsity letters in swimming and two in soccer. Holds three individuals and three relay records in swimming. State runner up in the 100 freestyle as a junior. National Honor Society. Member of the marching band and pep band. School lifeguard.

College: Kansas

Also nominated: Grayce Martin and Camden Maestas

LAWRENCE

CAROLINE DUNLAP

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 348. Earned three varsity letters in gymnastics and four in track and field and cheerleading. Three-time member of state qualifying team in gymnastics. National Honor Society. Choir. Yoga Club. Organized warm-clothing drive for homeless shelter.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Jackson Stoll and Devin Neal

LAWRENCE FREE STATE

YOAV GILLATH

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 437. Earned four varsity letters in soccer and one in track and field. A member of 2019 regional championship team in soccer. National Honor Society. Asian Culture Club. Model United Nations.

College: undecided

Also nominated: none

LAWSON

ELLIE SMITH

A 4.39 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked second in a class of 90. Earned four varsity letters in basketball and golf and three in volleyball. First team all-district setter. Placed seventh state golf tournament in 2020, making her the first girl in school history to accomplish it. Cardinals for Red Cross treasurer. Student council vice president. FBLA vice president.

College: Missouri

Also nominated: Ashlyn Staton

LEAVENWORTH

WILLIAM AYERS

A 4.33 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 279. Earned four varsity letters in bowling, three in soccer and one in football. First team all-conference in soccer and football senior year. National Honor Society. Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Volunteered in several city events.

College: Kansas State

Also nominated: Luke Wagner and Samantha Casmus

LEE’S SUMMIT

JOHNNY BRACKINS JR.

A 4.06 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked 64th in a class of 398. Earned two varsity letters in track and field. State champion in the long jump in 2019. School record holder in the long jump and triple jump. French Honor Society. Participated in marketing work program.

College: Southern California

Also nominated: Kendall Boone and Kam Hahn

LEE’S SUMMIT NORTH

ANNICA VALMASSEI

A 4.48 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked second in a class of 465. Earned four varsity letters in swimming, three varsity letters in track and one in volleyball. State champion in diving in 2021 and set the school record in diving. Fifth at state in pole vault in 2019.

College: Davidson

Also nominated: Kinsey Fiedler and Madison Goff

LEE’S SUMMIT WEST

PAYTON EASLEY

A 4.3 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked 17th in a class of 564. Earned four varsity letters in swimming. Holds five school records, including the 50, 100 and 200 freestyle. Participated in student government. Spanish Honor Society. Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

College: Nebraska-Omaha

Also nominated: Sebastian Smith and Tristen Caskey

LIBERTY

ASHTON MALONEY

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 487. Earned two varsity letters in soccer. All district second team in 2018 and 2019. Goalkeeper on 2019 state championship team. LINK crew. Spanish Honor Society. Participated in student government.

College: Texas

Also nominated: Kellen Goodwin and Noah Koch

LIBERTY NORTH

RYLEE STATZ

A 3.95 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 41st in a class of 520. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball and two in track. Member of state championship team in 2020. Three-time AVCA all-academic team. State qualifier in track. National Honor Society. Northland CAPS.

College: Baylor

Also nominated: Julia Johnson and William Angel

LINCOLN PREP

CHORUS DAVIS

A 4.27 GPA on a 4.0 scale. No class ranking. Earned four varsity letters in basketball and three in tennis and two in track and field. Finished third in singles in district senior year. Led conference in scoring junior year. National Honor Society. Participated in student government.

Also nominated: none

LONE JACK

NICK GILLESPIE

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked third in a class of 54. Earned four varsity letters in soccer and three in baseball. All-region and all-district goalkeeper in 2020.

College: Metropolitan Community College

Also nominated: none

LOUISBURG

CADE HOLTZEN

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in class. Earned four varsity letters in wrestling and cross country. Finished third, fifth and sixth at state wrestling meet. Reached state cross country meet. National Honor Society. Founder and vice president of Interact Club. Attended Rotary Youth Leadership summer program.

College: Nebraska

Also nominated: Alyse Moore and Ben Wiedenmann

LUTHERAN

EMMA SCHEMPP

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in her class. Earned two varsity letters in volleyball and soccer. Voted most improved in soccer. Participated in student government. National Honor Society.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Sarah-Marie Bereuter

MARANATHA

ADDISON PELHAM

A 4.21 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball. And one in track and one in soccer. Conference MVP in volleyball in 2020. First-team all-state in volleyball in 2020. National Honor Society president. Class president freshman and sophomore years.

College: Lipscomb University

Also nominated: none

MIDWAY

MORGAN DRIGGS

A 3.7 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked fifth in a class of 50. Earned four varsity letters in basketball and three in track and field. Two-time first-team all-conference in basketball. Participated in student government. SGA president.

College: Ozark Tech

Also nominated: Morgan Irvin

MILL VALLEY

ETHAN KREMER

A 3.96 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 41st in a class of 338. Earned four varsity letters in football and wrestling. A member of two state championship football teams. Class 5A defensive player of the year. A member of three state champion wrestling teams. National Honor Society. Youth wrestling coach for four years.

College: Colorado School of Mines

Also nominated: Ava Bredwell and Cooper Marsh

NORTH KANSAS CITY

DANIEL JOINER JR.

A 3.93 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 33rd in a class of 401. Earned four varsity letters in football, three in track and one in wrestling. Four-time all-conference in football, including player of the year his senior season. Holds school record in the javelin. National Honor Society. Reads to elementary children in the school’s feeder path program.

College: Army

Also nominated: Ruby Erickson and Chloe Tays

NORTHEAST

KURI SOTO

A 3.18 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 29th in a class of 163. Earned four varsity letters in baseball and two in football. All-conference in baseball sophomore season. Participated in numerous community service projects, including working at a food pantry and cleaning up trash around the school and neighborhood.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Giovanni Jennings

NORTHLAND CHRISTIAN

MIRIAM MCCUBBIN

A 3.7 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 11th in a class of 54. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball, track and field and cheerleading. Team captain in volleyball. State medalist in track. Also played basketball in the school’s inaugural season in the sport.

College: undecided

Also nominated: none

NOTRE DAME DE SION

MEGAN PROPECK

A 4.55 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in golf. Three-time individual champion and once runner-up. Holds five state scoring records. National Honor Society marketing director. Participated in Students Against Destructive Decisions. Volunteered for First Tee of Greater Kansas City.

College: Virginia

Also nominated: Shannon Karlin

OAK GROVE

DESTINY VALENTINE

A 3.9 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 26th in a class of 159. Earned three varsity letters in basketball, two varsity letters in volleyball and one in scorer. First-team all-conference in basketball. Second-team all-conference in volleyball. Nominated for Girls State. Participated in speech and debate.

College: Westminster

Also nominated: Autumn Hearn and Gael Perez

OAK PARK

IRELYNN WEST

A 3.67 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 58th in a class of 408. Earned four varsity letters in softball and three in basketball. Three-time, first-team all-district and four-time first-team all-conference in basketball. Participated in student government. National Honor Society.

College: Lindenwood

Also nominated: Eric Wachira and Logan Willmann

ODESSA

KELSEY COCKRUM

A 4.02 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 14th in a class of 40. Earned four varsity letters in tennis and track and field and one varsity letter in basketball. Set school records in most career wins in singles. Made state tournament senior year in tennis. National Honor Society secretary. Participated in blood drive and Back Snack program.

College: Belmont

Also nominated: Allison VanLanker and Faith Drenon

OLATHE EAST

HALI LIU

A 4.55 GPA on a 5.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 489. Earned four varsity letters in tennis. Four-time state qualifier. Two-time state placer. Participated in debate. National Merit Finalist. National Honor Society.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Ryan Kempker and Megan Li

OLATHE NORTH

JILLIAN KLUSMAN

A 4.32 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked 62nd in a class of 492. Earned three varsity letters in gymnastics and one in track and field. Finished second all-around at state in 2020. Holds school record in the pole vault. President of Healthcare Science CTE program. Peer mentor for Interpersonal. NIAAA Scholar regional winner.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Skylar Valdez and Joseph Triscornia

OLATHE NORTHWEST

SAM ARRICK

A 4.51 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked third in a class of 442. Earned two varsity letters in baseball and one in football. Made all-conference in football. Scored a 33 on his ACT.

College: Westpoint

Also nominated: Courtney Jackson and Ethan Kemp

OLATHE SOUTH

RILEY VANDAVEER

A 4.42 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked ninth in a class of 470. Earned four varsity letters in cross country and two varsity letters in track and field. Kansas 6A state runner up in cross country in 2019. State qualifier in the 800 in 2019. Drum major. National Honor Society. Eagle Scout. Writing center tutor.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Bryce Dickerson and Emma Knappenberger

OLATHE WEST

ALEX BIRGE

A 4.46 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked fourth in his class. Earned four varsity letters in baseball and three in football. Four-year starter in baseball. Honorable mention all-conference quarterback. National History Day national finalist. National Honor Society. Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

College: Wichita State

Also nominated: Ryan Sauter and Macy Glover

ORRICK

DYLAN COMSTOCK

A 3.87 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked third in a class of 18. Earned four varsity letters in basketball and three in golf. Scored over a 1,000 points in basketball. Two-time state qualifier in golf, finishing 20th as a sophomore. Participated in FBLA and led the Orrick chapter in FCA.

College: Park University

Also nominated: Lillian Fincher and David Brown

OSAWATOMIE

MADISON BALLOU

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 70. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball and basketball and three in softball. Received all-conference honors in volleyball, basketball and softball. Participated in student government. National Honor Society.

College: Cape Fear Community College

Also nominated: Allie Lagasse and Sam Farley

PAOLA

CARTER STANCHFIELD

A 3.91 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked17th in a class of 140. Earned three varsity letters in football and track and field. A Kansas Shrine Bowl selection in football. First team all-state in football. A Simone Award semifinalist. Participated in community service for four years. Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Future Business Leaders of America.

College: Pittsburg State

Also nominated: none

PARK HILL

KRISTEN BIRMINGHAM

A 4.01 on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 66th in a class of 490. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball and three in track and field. Evelyn Gates Award honoree. Finished 1,069 career kills. State champion in the 4x400 relay. National Honor Society. Volunteered for senior assisted living.

College: Oklahoma

Also nominated: Jordan Austin and Jacob Fickenscher

PARK HILL SOUTH

ARLEY ANDERSON

A 4.14 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked 24th in class. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball and two in soccer. Made all-state and all-region in 2020 in volleyball. Made second-team all-district in soccer in 2019. National Honor Society. Volunteered for Harvesters and Special Olympics.

College: Central Missouri

Also nominated: Braden Bartosh and Adah Anderson

PEMBROKE HILL

KENNEDY WOLF

An A student on a A+/F scale. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball, basketball, swimming and soccer. Made Mo-Kan all-star game in volleyball. Team captain in basketball senior year. Nancy Thornton Scholarship-abroad immersion. WIN for KC youth advisory board.

College: Yale

Also nominated: Liam Weaver and Hank Newell

PIPER

BLAKE BEASHORE

A 4.36 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked first in class. Earned three varsity letters in basketball and baseball. A member of the 2018 state championship basketball team. Newspaper editor. Presidential scholar nominee. 2018 speech and debate state champion.

College: Arkansas Tech

Also nominated: none

PLEASANT HILL

LANDON FATINO

A 4.39 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked second in a class of 157. Earned four varsity letters in cross country and track and field. District champion in cross country. Academic all-conference in track and field. All-state in choir. Student council president. President of HOSA.

College: Missouri Southern

Also nominated: Hannah Joyce and Tobin Wise

PLATTE COUNTY

MADDIE KLIPPENSTEIN

A 4.2 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in swimming and cross country and two in soccer. School record in 200 individual medley relay. All-state in the 200 individual medley relay. President of National Honor Society. Member of Kindness Club. FCA co-leader.

College: Naval Academy

Also nominated: Haley Luna and Chris Ruhnke

PLEASANT RIDGE

EMMA SCHWINN

A 3.99 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 11th in a class of 55. Earned three varsity letters in basketball and volleyball and two in track and field. Placed third at state in 2019 in the 300 hurdles. Regional record in the 300 hurdles. Junior and senior class president. Participated in Making Magic Happen fundraiser. Tutors for Pleasant Ridge Middle School.

College: Missouri Western

Also nominated: Bailey Ko

RAYMORE-PECULIAR

JOSHUA PATTERSON

A 4.24 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked 18th in a class of 428. Earned four letters in track and field and three letters in cross country. Member of 2019 state championship team. Three-time academic all-state in cross country. National Honor Society. Optimist Club student of the month.

College: Wichita State

Also nominated: Gunnar Griffin and Ashlyn Martin

RAYTOWN

SIRNEH ASANGWE

A 3.78 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 29th in a class of 349. Earned four varsity letters in golf and one in basketball and soccer. Received all-conference recognition senior season. International Students Club. Participated in student government. National Honor Society.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Madisen Berry

RAYTOWN SOUTH

EMMA SHELLEY

A 4.14 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked ninth in a class of 299. Earned four varsity letters in softball and one in track and field. Three-time first-team all-conference in softball. Made academic all-state all four years.

College: Coe College

Also nominated: Jailyn Wendt and George Hanson

RICHMOND

WYATT MARSHALL

A 3.67 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 26th in a class of 78. Earned four varsity letters in football, two in basketball, track and field and baseball. Three time all-district linebacker. Academic all-conference in basketball, baseball and track and field. National Honor Society. Participated in student government.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Wyatt Covey and Sophia Farnan

ROCKHURST

TOMMY TIETJEN

A 4.63 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in swimming and one in ice hockey. 400 freestyle relay state champion. All-state in the 200 and 500 freestyle. Class president freshman and sophomore years. Founder and president of Rockhurst Culinary Club.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Adward Frazier Jr. and Joe Seitzer

RUSKIN

JAYDA SMITH

A 4.24 on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked third in a class of 234. Earned three varsity letters in track and field. State qualifier in the 4x100 relay. Team captain for two years.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Javon Hampton and James Nassir

ST. JAMES ACADEMY

GABRIELLE TAYLOR

A 99.1 GPA on a 100 scale. Ranked 24th in a class of 227. Earned three varsity letters in tennis and track and field. Three time state qualifier and medalist in tennis. Qualified for state in track every year. Spanish Honor Society. National Honor Society. Over 120 hours of community service for Immaculate Conception-St Joe Parish.

College: Kansas

Also nominated: Anna Staley and Dakota Burritt

ST. MICHAEL

CLARE SCHEIER

A 100.36 GPA on a 100 scale. Ranked second in class. Earned four varsity letters basketball and two in tennis. Second place in doubles in 2020. Holds school record in blocks and rebounds. Peer mentor for school’s SMILE program, helping classmates with special needs. Top 10 finalist of biomedical research at the 2020 PLTW KC STEM Capstone Project Showcase.

College: Missouri State

Also nominated: Eva Petrini and Michael Stufflebean

ST. PIUS X

ANNA CERNICH

A 4.37 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 82. Earned four varsity letters in track and field, three in cross country and two in basketball. Placed seventh at state in the 3,200 meter run. Conference champion in cross country in 2018 and 2020. Scholar Bowl team captain. Participated in student government. National Honor Society. Volunteered for Harvesters.

College: Truman State

Also nominated: David Deters and Anthony Ross

ST. TERESA’S ACADEMY

MAGGIE MCINERNEY

A 98.44 GPA on a 100 scale. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball. AVCA Under Armour All-American honorable mention, putting her in the top 150 players in the country. School record holder in single-match kills with 38. National French Honor Society. 2020 AP Scholar Award. STEM Club.

College: University of Chicago

Also nominated: Kayla Smocks and Morgan Mos

ST. THOMAS AQUINAS

CAROLINE BIEN

A 98.6 GPA on a 100 scale. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball, one in swimming and diving and one in track and field. Four time first-team all-state. A member of two state championship teams. State qualifier in the high jump and state qualifier in diving. Peer mentor. Senior ambassador. National Honor Society.

College: Kansas

Also nominated: none

SCHLAGLE

GISELLE ALVARADO-ORTEGA

A 3.49 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 22nd in a class of 246. Earned three varsity letters in soccer, one in volleyball and one in track. First team all-conference in soccer in sophomore year. Team captain in volleyball in senior season. Participated in student government. A member of Latino Student Union.

College: UMKC or Kansas

Also nominated: none

SHAWNEE MISSION EAST

SARAH BINGHAM

A 4.45 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball, basketball and track and field. Evelyn Gates Award nominee in volleyball. Two time all-state and all-conference in volleball. Career blocks leader in basketball. National French Honor Society. SAAC vice president.

College: Illinois

Also nominated: Caden Nicholson and Hanna Robinett

SHAWNEE MISSION NORTH

TREVOR MAXVILLE

A 3.78 GPA on a weighted 4.38 scale. No class ranking. Earned four varsity letters in track and field and cross country. School record holder at the Boulder Run in cross country. State qualifier in track and field. Participated in DECA and Mathletics.

College: Southwest Baptist

Also nominated: Kiara Williams and Dayton Moody

SHAWNEE MISSION NORTHWEST

TY BLACK

A 4.02 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked 68th in a class of 356. Earned three varsity letters in football and two in basketball, track and field and golf. Gatorade Kansas player of the year finalists in 2020. Simone Award finalist in 2020. Peer model, working with at risk children in elementary school. Participated in Student Leadership Committee.

College: Air Force

Also nominated: Julie Johnson

SHAWNEE MISSION SOUTH

MAX CLOSE

A 4,2 GPA on a 5.0 scale. Ranked 54th in a class of 357. Earned four varsity letters in basketball and three in football and track and field. Shrine Bowl selection in football. Team captain in basketball senior season. Placed 12th in state in the shot put in 2019. National Honor Society. DECA. Homecoming King finalist.

College: Missouri

Also nominated: Natalie Payne and Chloe Wannamaker

SHAWNEE MISSION WEST

OLIVIA MORRIS

A 4.59 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in soccer and two in basketball. Member of 2018 conference championship team. Received all-conference honors in 2019. Participated in student government. National Honor Society. Volunteered for persons with disabilities program.

College: Truman State

Also nominated: Aiden Moxness and Spencer Schade

SMITHVILLE

OLIVIA LITTLETON

A 4.12 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked eighth in a class of 240. Earned four varsity letters in cross country and three in track and field and one in soccer. Placed third in state in cross country in 2018 and 2019. State champion 3,200 meter run in 2019. National English Honor Society. Volunteered for Harvesters. Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

College: Southwest Baptist

Also nominated: Veronica McNeece and Emma Chevalier

SOUTHEAST

CHANEL LEWIS

A 3.57 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked second in class. Earned three varsity letters in dance. Placed first in KC Classic. Team captain for three years. Southeast High School athlete of the year in 2020. Participated in student government.

College: Ball State

Also nominated: none

SPRING HILL

ALLISYN FRANK

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in class. Earned four varsity letters in volleyball and three in basketball and track and field. Tri County Player of the year in volleyball in 2020. State qualifier in long jump, triple jump and high jump. Participated in SADD, LINKS and PALS. National Honor Society.

College: Baker

Also nominated: Denver Gardner and Isabel Williams

STALEY

REMINGTON ASTA

A 3.8 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 94th in a class of 440. Earned three varsity letters in softball and track and field and two in wrestling. Two time all-conference in wrestling. School record holder in the javelin. Over 100 hours of community service. Presidential service award. Diversity Club.

College: Kansas

Also nominated: Kendrick Stone Jr.

SUMMIT CHRISTIAN

GRIFFIN KLIEWER

A 3.91 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Earned four varsity letters in basketball and one in football. Owns several school records in basketball, including scoring over 1,580 career points. Selected conference newcomer of the year in football, gaining 797 yards receiving in his first season. Participated in student government.

College: Indiana Wesleyan

Also nominated: Jared Gerdes and Alysa Ward

SUMNER ACADEMY

SUZANNE SCHMIDT

A 4.18 GPA on a weighted 4.0 scale. Ranked fourth in class. Earned three varsity letters in cross country, two in wrestling and one in soccer. Founding member of the school’s girls wrestling program. National Honor Society.

College: Park University

Also nominated: none

TONGANOXIE

MORGAN BRUSVEN

A 4.0 on a 4.0 scale. Ranked first in a class of 148. Earned four varsity letters in golf and basketball. Placed 10th at state golf in 2020 and 17 in 2019. Class president for four years. National Youth Leadership Forum for Medicine. National Honor Society.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Kristi Chambers and Dallas Bond

TRUMAN

KENNEDY RUCKER

A 4.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 42nd in a class of 361. Earned four varsity letters in softball and track and field and one in basketball. Made all-conference and all-district in softball in all four seasons. A state qualifier in track and field. McCoy Award winner, top 10 percent in Independence school district. National Honor Society.

College: Rockhurst

Also nominated: Josh Nunn

TURNER

CYRA CHRONISTER

A 3.79 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 15th in a class of 171. Earned four varsity letters in cross country and track and field and one in wrestling. Three time state qualifier in cross country. State qualifier in track and field in 2019. Three times earned all-conference honors in cross country and once in track and field.

College: Kansas

Also nominated: Arnoldo Silvestre-Ogaz

UNIVERSITY ACADEMY

LYDIE DJIBA

A 3.78 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked second in a class of 37. Earned four varsity letters in basketball, two in cheer leading and one in soccer. Team captain in basketball. President National Honor Society. Participated in student government.

College: Wichita State

Also nominated: none

VAN HORN

STEVIE WATKINS

A 4.36 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked third in a class of 229. Earned two varsity letters in volleyball. Earned all-conference honors. Team captain. Student government president. McCoy Award winner. Youth Advisory Council.

College: undecided

Also nominated: Kyne Butcher

WEST PLATTE

KATHERINE THARP

A 4.06 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked sixth in a class of 51. Earned four varsity letters in cross country, three in volleyball and track and field and two in basketball. Member of state championship team in cross country and track and field. A member of volleyball team that placed third in state. Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Future Business Leaders of America.

College: Air Force Academy

Also nominated: Isabella Clark and William Finke

WILLIAM CHRISMAN

EMILY MENDOZA

A 4.07 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 17th in a class of 300. Earned four varsity letters in tennis and two in swimming and soccer. All conference in junior and senior years in tennis and swimming. McCoy Award recipient. Participated in Scholar Bowl. National Honor Society.

College: Kansas

Also nominated: Gracie Ussery and Wyatt Leutzinger

WINNETONKA

DORIANNA BRAXTON

A 3.8 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked 18th in a class of 295. Earned two varsity letters in volleyball and one in track and field. Made first-team all-district senior year in volleyball. Two time all-state academics in volleyball. Student council president.

College: Park University

Also nominated: Zuhur Abdi and Andrew Humphrey

WYANDOTTE

EDGAR MENDEZ-CANO

A 3.95 GPA on a 4.0 scale. Ranked sixth in a class of 315. Earned four varsity letters in baseball and one in cross country. Summer enrichment day camp mentor. National Honor Society.

College: KU

Also nominated: Kenneth Jackson and Brayan Guzman-Bustillos

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