April 5, 2011
Section announces A. Dale Lacky scholarship recipients

Roseville's Kayla Granucci and Granite Bay's Kyle Howarth are the recipients of the first Clarke Coover Scholarship Awards as the Sac-Joaquin Section's top female and male scholar athletes.

Granucci and Howarth will receive $1,500 scholarship awards, named in honor of the former section commissioner.

They are two of 49 seniors to be honored for outstanding athletic performance, community service and academic success.

In all the section is awarding $34,400 in scholarships through its A Dale Lacky/California School Employees Association Awards program.

Four male and four female athletes will receive $1,000 awards. Among them is San Juan's Logan Day and Oak Ridge's Will Findley.

Twenty male and 20 female scholar-athletes will receive $600 awards.

All will be recognized at an awards ceremony April 12 at Hutchins Street Square in Lodi. Pacific Athletic Director Lynn King will be the keynote speaker.

Some $24,000 for the scholarship funding was raised through the annual volleyball and basketball foundation games. The CSEA contributed the balance of funding.

Here are brief bios, provided by section director of communications Will DeBoard, on the area athletes to receive the awards.

KAYLA GRANUCCI (ROSEVILLE) - Kayla is a 12-sport athlete for Roseville. She played four years of basketball and soccer, and two years apiece for the volleyball and water polo teams. Her junior year, the soccer team won the Section Division II championship. She's been a team captain for volleyball, water polo and basketball. She's the only 12-sport athlete in her graduating class. She volunteers for the California Police Youth Charities, for her church, the Roseville West Little League and the Jerry McNeil Foundation. She also works for Blue Star Moms, Toys for Tots and is a part of the school's Link Crew. Kayla has a 3.73 GPA and will attend the University of Nevada-Reno, where she'll major in psychology and child development in the hopes of becoming a teacher and coach.

KYLE HOWARTH (GRANITE BAY) - Kyle played soccer, basketball and volleyball for all four years and was on the varsity teams for all three his sophomore year. He's been a team captain four times, all-league for soccer three times and he's been a part of Section championship teams for volleyball and soccer twice each. He's been a Link Crew leader for the last two years, and he's been a volunteer coach for the local youth basketball camp for four years. He started a youth soccer night that got nearly 1,000 children to a Granite Bay exhibition soccer match. He's a lifetime CSF member and he's received a National Merit Award. Kyle has a 4.27 GPA and plans on attending UC Davis, where he will major in biology with the future goal of becoming a doctor.

LOGAN DAY (SAN JUAN) - Logan has played soccer and baseball for San Juan for all four years. He played football his freshman year. He was a team captain for the soccer team the last three years and baseball for the last two. He's been named all-league for baseball twice and soccer once. He's volunteered for the Angel Tree Project, Twin Lakes Food Bank, the St. John's Shelter for Women and Children and he is a server for his church's homeless outreach. He's the editor of the school yearbook, the president of the school Christian Club and a leader of the rally spirit club. Logan has a 4.14 GPA, which ranks him No. 3 in his class. He'll attend the University of Puget Sound where he'll major in English with the hopes of becoming a teacher, journalist or lawyer.

WILL FINDLAY (OAK RIDGE) - Will has played basketball and high jumped for the track and field team for all four years at Oak Ridge. In basketball, he's been named all-league twice and he made four all-tournament teams. He set the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II meet record his junior year, clearing 6-foot-8. He's a member of the Interact Club and the National Honor Society. He volunteers as a camp counselor for the Oak Ridge basketball camp, Walk for Education and the Pancake Cook-off. He's an AP scholar with honors. Will has a 4.26 GPA, which ranks him 11th out of a class of 517. He's undecided on his college - he's been accepted to Stanford University - and has future plans of being an engineer.

BRIANA BAER (CASA ROBLE) - Briana is a three-year varsity basketball player and has two varsity seasons apiece on the volleyball and soccer teams. She's been selected to the all-league team for all three of her basketball seasons as well as both volleyball years. She's the captain for all three of her teams this school year. She organized and officiated the Ram-Olympics, an Olympics-style competition that teams classes at Casa Roble with teams from four area elementary schools. She also volunteers for the Special Olympics, school blood drive, Pennies for Patients, Relay for Life and The Giving Tree. Briana carries a 4.09 GPA, which ranks her 12th in her class. She'll attend Gonzaga University and hopes to become a teacher.

HANNAH BEATTY (WOODLAND CHRISTIAN) - Hannah has played varsity volleyball for three years, basketball for three and soccer for two seasons. She was a team captain for basketball for two years and for the volleyball team once. She is the school's Every 15 Minutes coordinator and served on a mission trip to Navajo country. She also volunteers in several area sports camps as an instructor. She also volunteers at the Woodland Opera House and works with the school Community Service Club, Interact Club and Girl Scouts. Hannah has a 4.17 GPA, which ranks her No. 3 in her class. She'll attend Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, where she'll major in kinesiology and hopes to work in the field of orthopedic medicine.

TAMARA DE LA ROSA (COSUMNES OAKS) - Tamara played all four years for the golf team and played tennis for one season. She was named the golf team MVP the last three years. She has participated in her church choir for 11 years and also plays the piano. For the last three years, she's been her school's yearbook editor. She's been on the school honor roll for all four years and she's won an award for her excellence in English as well as a school PRIDE award. Tamara carries a 4.42 GPA, which ranks her No. 5 in her class. She's undecided on her college but plans on majoring in English to become a writer or editor. She's been accepted to UC Davis, UOP and St. Mary's College.

MELISSA IMMEL (DIXON) - Melissa is a four-year basketball player who competed for two years on the track team and one season apiece for the water polo and swim teams. Immel suffered a knee injury during her junior year, missing the majority of her senior basketball season as well. She remained a fixture on the bench and at her team's practices. She volunteers to help feed the hungry and homeless, Habitat for Humanity, Special Olympics and works as a referee in the Dixon community. She's the president of the school's Spirit Club and recently won the Violet Richardson Award for work within her community. Melissa has a 4.36 GPA, tops in her class of 263. She will attend UC Santa Barbara with a future goal of working in education/counseling.

KACIE JOHNSON (ELK GROVE) - Kacie is a four-year varsity tennis player who also played basketball and swam for a season apiece. She made the all-league team and was her team MVP three times (injury kept her from the fourth selection); she was her league's MVP her sophomore year. She's been Elk Grove's No. 1 singles player for all four of her seasons. She volunteers as a Muscular Dystrophy summer camp counselor and telethon worker, UC Davis Hospital trauma unit, tennis instructor and feeding the homeless. She's a National Merit Scholar, CSF lifetime member and is part of the school's Mock Trial county champion team. She carries a 4.45 GPA, which ranks her 13th out of 431. Kacie will attend Point Loma Nazarene University where she will continue to play tennis and hopes to become an emergency room nurse.

APRIL LITTLEJOHN (COLFAX) - April has played basketball for four years and volleyball and track and field for one season apiece. She was the basketball team captain the last two years and, her senior year, made the all-league team. She volunteers for several groups and events, including: Math and English tutoring, private basketball lessons, the Colfax basketball camp, building homes in Mexico, Colfax freshman orientation, the Service Club and helping with cleanup and environmental control at the Truckee River. She attended California Girls State, is the co-president of the Go Green Club and is a member of the Junior Statesmen of America. She carries a 4.23 GPA, tops in her class of 213. She has yet to decide on her college, but hopes to major in international relations with the hopes of getting a job in that field with a focus on aid to developing countries.

SARAH MANCINA (SACRAMENTO COUNTRY DAY) - Sarah competed on the track and field team for three years and competed with the volleyball and cross country teams for two years apiece. She's won league championships in track and her cross country team twice has qualified for the state championships. She volunteers with Breakthrough Sacramento, a college prep and tutoring program for under-resourced schools and students. She also counts chamber music, orchestra and dressage (an equestrian sport) among her activities. Sarah has a 4.38 GPA, which ranks her No. 3 in her class. She plans on majoring in physics with the goals of becoming a scientific researcher. She's undecided on her college choice, but has been accepted to the University of Rochester, St. Olaf, Agnes Scott and Eckerd.

NATALIYA REZNIK (SAN JUAN) - Nataliya is a four-year tennis player and has participated on the cross country and track and field teams for three years each. She's an all-league athlete for both tennis and cross country. She organized a Christmas party for two needy families in Citrus Heights, coordinating with the city of Citrus Heights and the San Juan High culinary program to make it even more special. She's volunteered at the Fair Oaks Presbyterian Church, with the San Juan baseball field renovation, catering events with the San Juan culinary arts program and she's worked with several charities in her community. She's won several awards through her work with the yearbook as well. Nataliya has a 4.16 GPA, No. 1 in her class of 150. She will attend Sacramento State with the hopes to work in the fields of sociology, fine arts, interior design or photography.

VICTORIA SANDSOR (PIONEER) - Victoria has played for the volleyball team for all four years. She's been named the team MVP twice and has been the team captain for three years. She was all-league her junior year and, this year, was named the TCC Most Valuable Player. She's volunteered at the Pioneer summer volleyball camp for the last three years, Girl Scout camp and she also serves as a private math tutor. She's a part of Pioneer's Peer Mentoring Club, the National Honor Society, the Vice Principal's Student Recognition Council and she was her school's first representative to California Girls State. Victoria has a 4.47 GPA, tops in her class of 361. She's undecided on her college, but plans on majoring in pre-medicine or biology in the hopes of becoming a pediatric oncologist.

ALYSSA SCHMIDT (WHITNEY) - Alyssa is a four-year softball star at Whitney. While her fourth season is ongoing, she's been selected to the all-league team her freshman, sophomore and junior years. She's a member of CSF, the National Honor Society, Key Club and Invisible Children (a movement seeking to end the conflict in Uganda). She was also named the SHOUT (senior mentoring program) Leader of the Year. Alyssa carries a 4.35 GPA and a course load that is almost primarily honors classes; she's ranked No. 4 in her class of 316. She'll attend Princeton University, where she'll major in literature/the classics and hopes to play softball.

LENEE WASHINGTON (SACRAMENTO) - Lenee played volleyball for four years, basketball for two and competed on the track and field team for two seasons. She's been named all-league and team MVP for volleyball twice. She volunteers at the Sacramento Food Bank and Family Services and is currently an intern for State Assemblyman Jeff Miller and at Alchemist Community Development Corporation. She's the co-founder of the school's Foster Youth tutoring program and also works with student government, Link Crew, Cooking Club, Hands on Trees Club and the Dreaming for Success in Kenya Club. Lenee has a 3.96 GPA. She's unsure of her college, and hopes to become a neurologist or neurosurgeon.

MEGAN WATSON (OAK RIDGE) - Megan played four years with the three-time Section champion softball team, and also played basketball her freshman and sophomore years. In the fall, she spends her time on the football sidelines as she served all four years as the football team's administrative assistant. She also won the President's Volunteer Service award and the Leadership for Service award after compiling more than 100 hours of service with youth softball clinics, school charity work and fundraising. She was her school's representative at California Girls State and the Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership Seminar. Megan carries a 4.21 GPA, which ranks her 15th in her class of 519. She'll attend either UC Davis or St. Mary's College and she hopes to eventually become a teacher or work in athletic administration. She'll continue playing softball and hopes to work with the football team if she decides on UC Davis.

DAMIEN BLAKE (SACRAMENTO COUNTRY DAY) - Damien has run for the cross country and track and field teams for three years apiece. He's played tennis for two seasons and basketball for one. He's qualified for the state cross country championships all three seasons. He was the tennis team MVP his junior year. Currently, he's competing for both the tennis and track and field teams. He's been a counselor and instructor at orchestra camps and is a pre-calculus tutor. He's played the piano for 12 years and has performed at the Mondavi Center; he's also played the cello for seven years. Damien has a 4.14 GPA. He's undecided on his college, where he will major in physics with the hopes of becoming an engineer.

LENNOX JACOBSON (MARYSVILLE) - Lennox has played football and tennis for all four seasons. He also played one year of basketball. He won the highest GPA award in every season he's competed. This year in football, he received all-league honors and was the GEL lineman of the year. He's a member of the teen leadership committee, a group of 30 students from the six high schools in the Marysville area that helped raise thousands of dollars for the Fremont-Rideout Hospital in Marysville. He's also heavily involved in several service projects through his church. He was chosen to attend California Boys State, where he was elected a city official in the mock government. Lennox carries a 4.20 GPA, which ranks him No. 4 in his class. He will attend Brigham Young University, where he will major in law or political science with the future goal of being a lawyer or politician.

JOSHUA KNAPP (FOREST LAKE CHRISTIAN) - Joshua played basketball for four years, baseball for three years and ran cross country for one season. He's won basketball awards twice for his hard work and dedication. He's an active member in several youth groups, interns at Eigen medical engineering firm, has made choral appearances at several area retirement homes and has been on many outreaches to San Francisco and Foresthill. He's also helped build a church and orphanage in Mexico. He represented his school at California Boys State and is a member of CSF. Joshua carries a 3.8 GPA and is still deciding on the college he will attend. He plans on majoring in mechanical engineering with a future goal of working for NASA or possibly robotic systems for the military.

KYLE LEE (UNION MINE) - Kyle has played soccer and volleyball for all four years. He's also wrestled for the last two seasons. He's been a team captain for the soccer team twice. He works as a math tutor for his classmates and he volunteers at the El Dorado County Animal Shelter. He also works with Toys for Tots, Crop Walk and Gift to Cure. He's a National Honors Society member, CSF member and he works on the school yearbook. Kyle carries a 4.28 GPA, which ranks him No. 2 in a class of 229. He will attend UC Davis, UC Irvine or Stanford with the plan of majoring in electrical or aeronautical engineering looking toward a future in one of those fields.

NICHOLAS MAR (McCLATCHY) - Nicholas has played basketball and baseball for all four years. This year, he also played football. He's been a team MVP three times and all-league for baseball the last two years. He was an UnderArmor Preseason baseball all-American this year. He volunteers for several organizations, including Sacramento Food Bank, Sacramento Asian Sports Foundation, the South Sacramento Vikings, Elks Lodge and the Land Park Pacific Little League. He's also worked on school canned food and coat drives and he's a member of student government. Nicholas has a 4.22 GPA. He's undecided on his college, and plans on majoring in business administration with a future goal of sports management or administration.

JESSE NAKASONE (LINCOLN-L) - Jesse has competed for the soccer and wrestling teams for each of the last four years. He also ran for the track and field team as a junior. He's been a league wrestling champion twice and a wrestling team captain twice. He volunteers at the Lincoln Care Manor and Villa del Rey assisted living home. He also serves food at a local mission, sings in his church choir and is a part of the Interact Key Club. He attended California Boys State. Jesse carries a 4.02 GPA. He's undecided on his college choice, but he plans on majoring in political science with the future goal of becoming a lawyer.

ZACHARY STONE (NATOMAS) - Zachary has played 14 sports during his time at Natomas. He's played basketball and tennis and run for the cross country team for four years. He also played golf his freshman year and ran track his sophomore year. He's been a team captain three times and all-league for cross country three times. He's also won league tennis titles twice. He volunteers for Trout Creek Bible camp for three years and has taken two mission trips to Mexico. He's a member of the Natomas Christian, Asian and Mesa Clubs. He was voted the senior class mascot - the "classcot." He has a 4.4 GPA, tops out of his class of 300. He will attend Multnomah University, where he will major in Bible and youth ministries with the future goal of becoming a youth pastor.

DREW WIXON (OAKMONT) - Drew has played for the water polo and baseball teams for all four years. He was the team MVP and named all-league in water polo twice. His water polo teams placed in the top four in the Section each of the last three years. He's the team captain in baseball this year. He has volunteered at Bikefest 2007, feeding the homeless at a local shelter and he helped package food to be sent to Africa for famine relief. He's won an American Legion award and the Gold Plus Academic Merit Award. He will attend Covenant College in Georgia, where he'll continue his baseball career and major in engineering.

-Bill Paterson



About the Prep blog

Bee staff writers Joe Davidson and Bill Paterson provide news, analysis and insight on the area high school sports scene in their Prep Blog. Have a question to ask them? Send them an email any time at jdavidson@sacbee.com or bpaterson@sacbee.com.

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