By David Krueger Herald Writer
EDMONDS — Every year the Edmonds School District honors its top scholar athletes with a banquet to celebrate their accomplishments.
However, it’s not every year that one of those athletes has played two sports with a torn anterior cruciate ligament.
Lynnwood’s Arsenia Ivanov, who played basketball and tennis for the Royals with a torn ACL, was awarded $4,000, the top scholarship at the 12th Annual Edmonds School District Scholar-Athlete and Coach/Community Recognition Banquet Wednesday night at Edmonds-Woodway High School.
“I’m so thankful,” Ivanov said after the award was announced. “I know it’ll go such a long way. It’s so nice to get the support.”
The Annual Scholar Athlete Program honors students who excel in sports and in the classroom in the four schools of the Edmonds School District. It also recognizes a coach from each school, as well as a community member who has made a difference.
Ivanov competed in three sports at Lynnwood: volleyball, basketball and tennis, despite tearing her ACL twice. She tore it during her freshman year — making it back in time to play in the basketball playoffs — and for a second time the summer before her senior year.
However, Ivanov didn’t let that stop her. She played basketball and tennis this year with a torn ACL, helping lead the Royals to their first district basketball title in school history. Her ACL is still torn and Ivanov plans to get it fixed at the end of summer.
“You have to always keep a positive attitude and keep your head high,” Ivanov said. “Even when things are bad. You’ve got to keep trying your best in the good times and the bad.”
The senior picked up a tennis racket for the first time as a junior and was on the Lynnwood varsity squad two weeks later.
For her senior project, Ivanov — who has earned eight varsity letters — organized a Women in Sports conference for female athletes and coaches throughout King and Snohomish County. About 200 female high school athletes attended, as did 30 guest speakers.
Ivanov called it the highlight of her high school career.
“I love sports and I love people and I wanted to combine the two somehow,” Ivanov said. “I didn’t want to be too broad, so I invited the females and decided to make it a women in sports conference.”
Ivanov is graduating with a 3.7 grade point average and will be heading to Washington State University to study psychology or communications. She also took Advanced Placement and Honors classes at Lynnwood High School, where she volunteered in the Random Acts of Kindness Club, Link Crew and the Rowdy Royals Spirit and Sportsmanship Club.
The Royal laughed that she didn’t have a lot of free time in high school but that she liked it that way.
“We make a joke that I don’t have a social life,” Ivanov said. “That’s OK. My social life is sports. I’d rather look bat at high school and gotten a lot done than have been bored.”
Ivanov was not the only scholar athlete to suffer a brutal injury. AnhViet Nguyen, who was awarded a $3,000 scholarship, played basketball for Mountlake Terrace until a severe knee injury ended his season in January. He tore his left meniscus in a basketball game in January, which has since healed fully.
Despite the injury, Nguyen continued to attend games and practices to help motivate his team.
“I love doing what I do. I love the people I’m surrounded with,” Nguyen said.
Nguyen, who also plays tennis for the Hawks, served as associated student body president and will be graduating with a perfect 4.0 GPA. He is “pumped” to begin studying international relations at Stanford University in the fall.
“I think my dream job would be a diplomat,” Nguyen said. “I’m really interested in other cultures and travelling. There’s just so much going on in the world.”
The other $3,000 award went to Ryan McArthur, who earned eight varsity letters while participating in cross country, basketball and track at Lynnwood High School. The Eagle Scout finished fifth in the event as a junior in last year’s state meet.
McArthur, who went to the last two track and field state championships, pulled a hamstring in the district preliminaries and won’t be able to go to state his senior year. However, he will continue to run track at Western Washington University, where he plans to study kinesiology while pursuing a degree in physical therapy.
“It’s nice knowing it wasn’t my last time on the track,” McArthur said. “I’ll be there next year.”
The Royal has already has completed over 360 hours of sports medicine work while also volunteering at a local food bank and retirement center. He hopes to get completely healthy, and then spend the summer doing what he loves: running.
“It’s just the thrill of crossing the finish line. Running fast is fun with the wind in your face,” McArthur said. “It keeps you in shape. And you meet some good friends on the track team.”
Four scholar athletes took home scholarships of $2,500 with three of them being from Meadowdale High School. The Mavericks’ Michael Cummings, Julianne Kossian and Chris Prasanna all earned the award while Lauren Nguyen of Edmonds-Woodway also was awarded a $2,500 scholarship.
In all, 17 students were awarded scholarship money.
The program is put on by donations of local businesses and community members. In the program’s 12-year history it has awarded almost $350,000 to over 200 student athletes.
$4,000–Arsenia Ivanov, Lynnwood
$3,000–AnhViet Nguyen, Mountlake Terrace
$3,000–Ryan McArthur, Lynnwood
$2,500–Lauren Nguyen, Edmonds-Woodway
$2,500–Michael Cummings, Meadowdale
$2,500–Julianne Kossian, Meadowdale
$2,500–Chris Prasanna, Meadowdale
$2,000–Blake Fernandez, Mountlake Terrace
$2,000–Haley Suarez, Meadowdale
$1,500–Isabella Maza, Lynnwood
$1,500–Jack Griffing, Edmonds-Woodway
$1,500–Soren Steelquist, Lynnwood
$1,000–Emily Storino, Edmonds-Woodway
$1,000–Taylor Arbuckle, Mountlake Terrace
$1,000–Alex Hull, Edmonds-Woodway
$1,000–Bryce Landers, Lynnwood
$1,000–Christina Wimmer, Mountlake Terrace