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Athletes come up ACEs

Third-annual ACE awards recognize charather in athletes and sports at Alex Theatre.

May 21, 2012|By Edgar Melik-Stepanyan

GLENDALE — They were honored with all-league awards, were recognized at team banquets and were praised in the community for their accomplishments throughout the year.

Before the school year finished, local athletes had one more opportunity to be acknowledged for their feats at the third annual Athletes with Character and Ethics (ACE) Awards on Monday at the Alex Theatre.

Athletes from Glendale Community College and Glendale, Hoover and Crescenta Valley high schools were distinguished for demonstrating outstanding athletic skill, sportsmanship, citizenship and leadership. The event was sponsored by the Character and Ethics Project of Glendale, the Glendale Adventist Medical Center and Glendale Arts, among others.

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At the end of the night, it was a student who never competed who drew the loudest and longest applause.

Ronald de los Reyes — a senior with special needs from Glendale High — won the high school spirit award, drawing a standing ovation from the administrators, guests and student-athletes in the crowd.

"I wanted this victory," said Reyes, who served as a motivator on sidelines of football, soccer and basketball games and was the selected as the most spirited Nitro by his classmates. "I am so very happy. I love Glendale High."

No other Nitro might adore the school more than Reyes.

"He's always 100% spirited," Glendale High assistant principal Rene Valdes said. "He truly loves Glendale High. He loves wearing his jersey. We'll never have another Ronald who can match his enthusiasm and love for a school."

CV senior Pavle Atanackovic, who was the All-Area Boys' Soccer Player of the Year, won the High School Male Athlete of the Year award. Atanackovic led the CV squad to its first Division IV championship this past season. His coach, Grant Clark, was named the Coach of the Year for a Male Team sport.

"It's nice to be recognized for things on the field, but it's more important to be recognized for things we do off the field," Clark said. "Pavle is a great player. He deserves the recognition that he gets for the work he does on the field and off the field."

Hoover's Kariz Alberto, an All-Pacific League second-team selection, was awarded the High School Female Athlete of the Year.

"It means a lot," Alberto said. "I didn't expect it to happen. We worked hard and tried our best this year."

The CV baseball team, which won the Pacific League title for the first time since 2008, was selected as the High School Male Team of the Year.

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