Information courtesy of the WAC office
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- California Baptist swimmer Jerome Heidrich and Kansas City women’s soccer player Lexie Howard have been named the 2018-19 Western Athletic Conference Stan Bates Award winners. Named in honor of former WAC Commissioner Stan Bates, the annual award is given to the WAC’s top male and female scholar-athletes and recognizes athletic, academic and community accomplishments. The award includes a $3,000 postgraduate scholarship.
Howard becomes the third-ever student-athlete in Kansas City history (since being members of the WAC in 2013-14) to receive this top honor. She joins volleyball stand-out Sydney Crimmins (2016) and Eilise O'Connor (2014) in women's basketball as the other recipients.
The native of Kearney, Mo., graduated summa cum laude in May with a bachelor’s degree in middle school education with a 4.00 GPA. A four-time Academic All-WAC honoree, she earned United Soccer Coaches first team Scholar All-Region honors.
A three-time team captain, Howard ended her career as the program leader in career points (96) and goals (38). In 71 career games, she also had 20 assists and 15 game-winning goals. As a senior, Howard ranked tied for 13th nationally in assists (10), 14th in shots on goal (2.33) and tied for 33rd in points (30). She is a three-time All-WAC honoree, was named WAC Offensive Player of Year as a sophomore and was named to the WAC All-Tournament Team three times. As a senior, she earned USC Pacific Region second team honors.
Howard coached eighth grade soccer, participated in Uplift, delivering food to the homeless and served as a math tutor. She also collected toys for Boys & Girls Club and read to children. The secretary of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee as a senior, she was involved in the search committee for the new Director of Athletics. She twice earned the Circle of Champions Awards and received the Stan Durwood Award.
“Lexie Howard is the most talented soccer student-athlete that I have ever had the pleasure of working with,” Head Coach Chris Cissell said. “She shattered all expectations in her illustrious four-year career on the field, in the classroom, on campus and in the greater Kansas City community. As an athlete, she was our overall best player leading us to back-to-back WAC regular season championships. She is a great student-athlete who is an even better person with tremendous character and integrity. She is a perfect example of overall comprehensive excellence.”