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Scholar Athletes

Nicholas Adimora
Scholar athlete, Nicholas Adimora, will soon be playing Football for Eastern Washington University. Adimora, as a scholar, plans on majoring in Kinesiology at EWU. He has been gaining experience over the span of 5 years. Aside from football, he has also played basketball since the age eight. Adimora tells us that his reason for accepting the offer was because, “It was a better position for me. I get to play more, so I picked that.” which is also why when receiving the offer he felt, “excited.” Even after working hard while playing football, he was able to manage school making sure he, “...put the time in. Just find time and get it done.” Some advice he has for newcomers to the sport would be for them to, “Work hard, and keep working.” Adimora lets us know that the hardest part of his sport would be, “To

not get tackled or taken down. And trying to make the tackle really.” Even with the COVID-19 pandemic hitting us all, he made sure to keep going outside and to practice when he could. A funny moment Adimora shares with us is when, “we poured all our water on Coach Bedell after winning a game, yeah that was pretty fun.” Fun facts about him are that he enjoys eating Mike N Ikes and knows how to skateboard well. Finally, Adimora wishes to thank Coach Bedell and Mr. Rodriguez for all they’ve done for him throughout the year helping him with his achievements. 

Chelsea Aninyei
Scholar athlete, Chelsea Aninyei, will soon be participating in the University of California, Riverside’s track and field team as one of their jumps competitors. Aninyei plans on majoring in biology at UCR. She has actively participated in Mayfair’s track and field program for a total of four years.  When receiving the scholarships she expresses that, “I felt ecstatic because I didn’t believe that something that I happened to pick up since it was fun would actually be my gateway to college and I still get it enjoy it as well.¨ Chelsea was able to manage academics while playing her sport by having, ¨…good time management and trying to have fun while playing the sport.” Some advice she has for newcomers is: “Track is a sport that
anyone can get into and is very versatile since there is so many events in track and field.'' Track aside, Chelsea enjoys playing basketball during her free time. She recalls a funny moment when, “Asha, Mia, and I, during our first track meet, raced the 4x200 and it was funny because we didn’t know what to do.” A fun fact about her is that she has a ritual before track meets, which is eating pesto pasta the day before a meet. Finally, she wants to thank her best friends Mia Cuellar and Asha Greenidge because “they are always there for me, especially during CIF when I stress out.”
Mya Tillman
Scholar athlete, Mya Tillman, will soon be playing volleyball for Cal State Dominguez. As a scholar, Tillman plans on majoring in communications and journalism. Since the age of seven, she has actively participated in volleyball for a total of eleven years. Tillman says her motivation for continuing the sport would be because of her, “... love of the sport. And when I'm still in school I want to keep playing it.” She later says that receiving the scholarship, “Felt good, for my hard work, dedication and sacrifice to be recognized.” She was able to manage her academics while playing volleyball by making sure to balance both because having good grades make it easier to receive scholarships and have more opportunities. She lets us know that the hardest part about volleyball is, “Staying dedicated, working hard instead of hanging out with your friends.” She also advises newcomers to volleyball to, “Trust the process.” saying that both them and their ability will get better. She has previously played basketball for fun as a way to pass time and enjoy herself. A fun fact about Tillman is that she previously played volleyball with Kobe Bryant's daughter, Gianna, before she passed. Tillman wishes to thank her parents and her best friend Maraih for pushing her and getting her where she needs to be.
Jackson Zylstra
Scholar athlete, Jackson Zylstra, will soon be playing football as a defensive lineman for Wingate University in North Carolina. Zylstra plans on majoring in biology at WU. He has been playing football since the age of seven which led him to learn throughout his years of playing. His love for the game and enthusiasm to play every year are what motivated him to continue playing in college, making him feel overjoyed when receiving the scholarship. As he worked for his success he made sure to “...have time after practice to finish all of [his] classwork” as well as “work hard on and off the field¨. Football aside, he has played baseball and basketball in the past, broadening his experience in sports. A fun fact about him is that he wants to major in biology to become a veterinarian. When studying he “loves eating goldfish.” The best class he has taken throughout high school is anatomy. He expresses his gratitude by thanking his parents and
Coach Bedell for all of the support they’ve given him throughout the year.
Esther Kailiponi
Scholar athlete, Esther Kailiponi, will soon be playing volleyball at Lewis Clark State College, Idaho, with a major in psychology. She has played volleyball since the age of seven, giving her a total of ten years of experience with her sport. Some advice she has for newcomers to volleyball is to “keep going even if times are hard.” Some challenges she had while playing volleyball was “dealing with players who either don’t respect the aspect of volleyball” which she learned to deal with them through communication.  Many athletes were affected by the pandemic but Kailiponi did not let the pandemic affect her – she still managed to practice with the volleyball club, only taking a month off. She was involved in a volleyball travel club outside of school that helped her become a better volleyball athlete. One funny moment she had with her team was when “[she] ran up to the net and slipped and then never came up again which was really embarrassing.” A fun fact about Kailiponi is that she likes to bake and dreams of opening up her own bakery when she’s older. Her favorite classes that she has taken over high school is ERWC 12. She explains, “It is a really fun class because there is a lot of rhetorical analysis and a lot of writing, as well as forensics, which is a fun class to take and the teacher is great.” Kailiponi expresses her gratitude towards her family by thanking them for “... keeping me on the right track, kept me in check, and always reminded me to put a hundred percent of my effort.”
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