Caroline "KK" Clark, who won an Olympics gold medal in water polo this summer in Rio, visited her alma mater, Sacred Heart Prep, on Sept. 13. Our correspondent, Fiona Lempres, an 8-year-old second-grader at Sacred Heart, interviewed her.
USA Water Polo champion KK Clark spoke to students at Sacred Heart Schools, Atherton, on Sept. 13 about how she got to the Olympics from Sacred Heart. And she brought her gold medal! She gave this interview after her speech.
Question: How did you get your nickname?
Answer: My real name is Caroline and my last name is Clark so it should be CC. But I’m the youngest of three girls so my parents called me baby cakes, and that turned into cakes, and somehow that turned into KK. My older sister, Elizabeth, goes by ZZ so I may have tried to copy her.
Q: Do you have any superstitions?
A: I don’t have many because it’s important to be flexible. But before every game our captain, Maggie Steffens, always caps me. We take our hair out for the national anthem, and then we line up for the start, then she puts my cap on me. We do it every time no matter what.
Q: What’s your favorite food?
A: It was Eggo Waffles when I was growing up, and now it’s In-N-Out Burger.
Q: Do you always wear red nail polish?
A: This is actually the color I wore during the Olympics. The night before we started playing we got packages from our families and friends, and one of them was from my godmother with this nail polish in it. So I wore it during the Olympics and I keep wearing it because I like the color.
Q: Who inspired you?
A: A lot of people inspired me. My coaches. And my uncle, my mom’s brother, who was an Olympian in 1984. And his wife, my aunt, was a swimmer who qualified for the Olympics in 1980, but didn’t get to go because of politics. So I was inspired to win a medal for all the athletes that didn’t get to go in 1980.
Q: Do you still ride horses?
A: I haven’t ridden a horse in a long time because I didn’t want to get injured before the Olympics. So I don’t have a horse anymore, but I ride at the Menlo Circus Club when I visit.
Q: What was the most important thing you learned at Sacred Heart?
A: That’s a really good question because I learned so many things. I would say I learned how to balance academics with water polo with riding with all the other things going on in my life!
See an earlier Almanac story on KK Clark.