Kealia Watt is an American soccer player who has been part of Houston Dash and, most recently, Chicago Red Stars — both teams of the NWSL. She was previously known as Kealia Ohai, but she took the Watt surname from his husband and football star JJ Watt. Kealia is a forward and used shirt number 7 while in Houston Dash. As a Chicago Red Star player, she is currently wearing number 2 on her back. Her family is her motivation; she looks up to her sister Megan and would love to learn how to play the piano.
Kealia Watt Quick Facts
- Full Name: Kealia Watt
- Birth Date: January 31, 1992
- Birthplace: Sandy, Utah
- Nickname: K
- Nationality: American
- Siblings: 3 sisters
- Children: None
- Spouse: Justin James Watt
- Profession: Soccer player
- Salary: ≈ 40K
- Net worth: ≈ 1M
- Social media: @Kealiamae (Instagram) @KealiaOhai (Twitter)
- Awards: USWNT U-20 World Cup Winner (2012), U-20 World Cup top scorer (2012).
- Last Updated: 07/12/2021
Kealia Watt’s Birthplace and Early life
Kealia Watt was born in Sandy, Utah, to Ben and Cindy Ohai. The couple had 3 other girls: Megan, Aubrey, and Cambria. Kealia’s father was born in Hawaii, so he wanted to name one of her daughters like one of the beautiful islands in that state. She used to be mad at her parents for choosing such a difficult name to pronounce, so she asks people to call her “K.” Kealia grew up in Draper, Utah. She defines herself as a player who is calmed outside the field but intense and a bit crazy when she is on it.
Kealia went to the Alta High School in Utah and graduated in June 2010. Watt loved soccer since she was a child. Playing the sport in high school was the more natural step for her. She played varsity soccer in Alta High School for 4 years as a forward. Watt was also into the track as a sport, so she competed for 3 years in the 4×100 meter relay and in the 100-meter dash.
Kealia’s awards and highlights in high school include the 2010 NSCAA National High School Player of the year, and the Alta High School team was state champion for 4 consecutive years (2006-2009). Kealia was also in the All-State selection 3 times, and she was the 5A soccer MVP from 2007 to 2009. Watt was Utah Ms. Soccer in 2008 and 2009. She was also named Gatorade state player of the year twice and had many other recognitions for her dynamism and love for the sport.
Kealia’s time at the University of North Carolina
Several universities throughout the country were looking to have Kealia on their side. She did not want to stay in Utah, and she had 3 top universities in her mind: the University of Southern California, the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of North Carolina.
Once she visited the latter, she knew she did not want to look any further. That was going to be her home and the place that would improve her potential from 2010 to 2013. Ohai Watt majored in journalism and mass communication, but soccer was still her main goal in terms of professional aspirations.
Kealia had outstanding statistics when she attended the University of North Carolina. In her freshman season, she started in 22 of the 24 games, played in all of them for a total of 1,528 minutes, scored 14 goals, which made her lead the goal leader for UNC that year, and 24% of her shots ended up in goals. Watt earned several other prizes and mentions like Player of the Week, 2010-2011 ACC Academic Honor Roll, she was part of the All-Tournament Team in the 2010 ACC Tournament, and had many more recognitions throughout her first year.
The forward was second in the university’s scoring table during her sophomore year. She played in 20 matches for a total of 1,408 minutes. She was part of the Second-team All-ACC selection and had several other awards under her name.
2012 was a glorious one for Kealia and North Carolina. The Tar Heels won the NCAA Division I after beating Penn State 4 to 1. The number 7 was named the most outstanding offensive player that year.
Kealia’s senior season did not come with a title. North Carolina lost to UCLA in the final of the bracket, but the season sure came with goals, assists, and minutes played. She started and played in 25 games, scored 11 goals, and assisted in 6.
Kealia Watt’s Professional Career
Outstanding performance with the U-20
College competitions were not the only thing in the forward’s mind. She was also a part of the U-20 Women’s National Team. In 2012, Kealia won the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup and, on top of that, she scored the winning goal in that final against one of the strongest teams in the competition, Germany.
A career with Houston Dash
In 2014, a newly established team, the Houston Dash, picked Kealia to be its shining forward. The team wanted to have Kealia from the beginning. Its president said she was going to be a great asset for the organization and community.
As expected, a new team would not do splendidly in its first season. The Tar Heels was the last team on the table with just 5 wins and a goal difference of -21. The team managed to become stronger the following season. Kealia and the Houston Dash team finished 5th in the 2015 season, on top of the more stable team Portland Thorns.
Even though the team fell way behind the others in 2016, Kealia was improving her scoring kills and was the top goal scorer of the league alongside Lynn Williams — both scored 11 goals. The #7 was also part of 2016’s NWSL Best XI.
2017 was a difficult one for the forward. She tore her ACL in June at a match against Orlando Pride. It seemed like nothing in the beginning, but the injury was serious and left her out of the field for 10 months. Ironically, her return game in April 2018 was at the same stadium and against the same team. During that season, Kealia played in 17 games and could only score 5 goals.
Chicago Red Stars and a Fresh Start
While the soccer player had her sisters and fiancée in Texas, she wanted to improve her skills and move forward in her career. In 2019, she decided to ask for a trade to Chicago Red Stars. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, her debut with the team was delayed. She finally got to play in June in the NWSL Challenge Cup. She played in 6 games but could not score any goals. Ironically, the final of said cup was against Houston Dash, which beat the Red Stars 2-0.
In the 2020 Fall Series, Watt played in 4 games and scored 2 goals. Kealia has not been able to regain her top form in 2021. She has played in 14 games and has scored just one goal.
Kealia Watt’s Best Moments
Kealia’s best moments were definitely in 2016. She was on fire. Here are her 11 goals of the season and one more from the beginning of the next. Watt is a special forward. She scores from a long or short distance. She does it with style, elegance, speed, and precision. Kealia does not think twice before scoring; her mind is set to win.
Back in 2012, Kealia had the honor of scoring the goal that would lead the U-20 USWNT to win the World Cup against Germany. Her accuracy and fearless attitude made the shot exquisite.
Kealia Watt’s family: Spouse and kids
Kealia and Justin James Watt —the well-known Houston Texans and Arizona Cardinals football player— started dating in 2016. The defensive end was proposed to Kealia in 2019, and the couple got married in February 2020 in the Bahamas. The sports duo has not had a child yet. They are both happy with just looking after their nephews and dogs for the moment. Mrs. Watt is very close to her sister Megan Cushing, who was also a fantastic soccer player.
Kealia Watt’s net worth and career earnings
The NWSLPA does not release salary reports for the women playing in the NWSL as the MLSPA does. But, as of 2020, the average salary was around USD35,000.00. It could be estimated that Kealia’s career earnings could be around USD 280,000 and USD 360,000.00. Mrs. Watt has an estimated net worth of USD1,000,000.00.
Frequently asked questions
Question: How tall is Kealia Watt?
Answer: Kealia Watt is 5’4” (1.63m).
Question: Is Kealia Watt on the USWNT?
Answer: Kealia Watt is not currently on the USWNT but was part of it in 2016 for 3 appearances, and she scored 1 goal.
Question: What ethnicity is Kealia Ohai?
Answer: Kealia is American and her father was born in Hawaii.
Question: Where is Kealia Watt from?
Answer: Kealia Watt is from Utah but has also lived in North Carolina, Texas, and Chicago.
Question: Why was Kealia Watt traded?
Answer: Kealia Watt requested to be traded to the Chicago Red Stars when looking for a way to improve her skills as a forward and wanting to regain her top form.
Question: Who is Kealia Watt?
Answer: Kealia Watt is an American soccer player who has been part of Houston Dash and, most recently, Chicago Red Stars — both teams of the NWSL. She was previously known as Kealia Ohai, but she took the Watt surname from his husband and football star JJ Watt. Kealia is a forward and used shirt number 7 while in Houston Dash. As a Chicago Red Star player, she is currently wearing number 2 on her back. Her family is her motivation; she looks up to her sister Megan and would love to learn how to play the piano.
Question: Where did Kealia Watt go to college?
Answer: Kealia attended the University of North Carolina.
- Seattle Times
- USA Today
- USC Trojans
- Instagram, 2
- Houston Dynamofc, 2
- Keeping It Heel
- Houston Chronicle
- Chicago Suntimes, 2
- NWSL Soccer, 2
- Bleacher Report
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