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Athletes of the Month: Kayla Fagan & Rusty Dan

Athletes of the Month: Kayla Fagan

Kayla Fagan: Coeur d’Alene High School

Kayla Fagan is an all-around athlete playing varsity soccer, basketball and tennis. The 17-year-old senior at Coeur d’Alene High School is a lettered athlete and is ranked ninth in her senior class, maintaining a 4.0 GPA or higher throughout her school career.

Being constantly active has come at a price, and Kayla has had to manage shin splints, which at first kept her from playing sports for weeks at a time. Instead of the pain keeping her from playing, she’s developed a pain tolerance and pushes through to play the sports that she loves.

“My favorite part about playing sports is the competition. I am a super competitive person and love the feeling of performing well, and getting a hard-fought win with my team. Also, I love the friendships I make on my teams,” Kayla says.

Next year, she plans on attending Brigham Young University (BYU) but will play intramural sports. She’d like to combine her love of sports by pursuing a career in broadcasting, marketing or videography.

“I am obsessed with sports and I think it would be fun to have a career along those lines,” she says.

Also, sports have taught her that interpersonal relationships are integral to success. “One life lesson I have learned from playing sports is that in order to succeed and win games, you have to be connected as a team,” Kayla says. “The more you like your team, the better you all play.”

Athletes of the Month: Rusty Dan

Rusty Dan: Lake City High School

Rusty Dan is a senior at Lake City High School who knows that being thoughtful and considerate about all aspects of life matter as much as being active in extracurricular activities. He has been a wrestler for the past six years, and it is a quote by Coach Owen that has continually reminded him of the importance of little things.

“When I think about wrestling, the first memory that comes up is every time Coach Owen would shout ‘Little things win matches!’” says Rusty. “I focus on the little things in life such as my relationships with advisers and administration. I keep my grades up and try my best to be helpful to my mom. If I do small and impactful things, everything else will fall into place the way it is supposed to.”

Rusty has kept his focus both inside and outside of school. In wrestling, he qualified for state last year even though he had a torn shoulder. “I tore my shoulder in two spots during the last dual of the season. I was able to power through the last two weeks (and) ended up placing second in the district tournament which qualified me for state and lost in the placing round all while my shoulder was torn,” he says.

In addition to wrestling, he’s the drum major at Lake City, a GRAMMY Signature school, he notes. He’s also vice president of the ASB and vice president of DECA for the northern region.

After high school, he plans on serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) and later attend Brigham Young University in Hawaii to study education.

“I want to be able to change the lives of the people around me,” Rusty says. “Looking back on my life, my teachers are the ones who have changed mine the most.”

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