CHARACTER COUNTS

Odyssey Institute’s Dylan Mapston wins Character Counts scholarship

Feb 23, 2021, 11:44 AM

(Photo via @Keepers_Care on Instagram)...

(Photo via @Keepers_Care on Instagram)

(Photo via @Keepers_Care on Instagram)

Dylan Mapston, a sophomore from Odyssey Institute in Buckeye, was named the 2020 Character Counts scholarship winner on Monday night.

The $10,000 scholarship, presented by Parker & Sons, was announced via a virtual awards ceremony to celebrate all of the 2020 finalists, who are high school athletes that make an impact on their communities off the field.

Mapston accepted his scholarship during a break in a soccer game and spoke with Arizona Sports’ Doug & Wolf.

“Yeah, I’m playing. I’m kind of in the middle of a game right now,” Mapston said, smiling. “I want to thank everyone who has helped and the other contestants.”

The goalie has focused his charitable efforts on children.

He was influenced by aunts and a 2-year-old cousin in his family who have battled cancer.

Mapston started Keepers Care for Kids, which brings together his love for goalkeeping with his desire to uplift children battling cancer.

Mapston has also collected stuffed animals to give to hospitalized children.

“I want to bring that to other kids and make sure that they have a good time in the hospital,” Mapston told ArizonaSports.com in October.

“A lot of times the parents are spending a lot of money on making sure that kids are being safe and making sure that they go through it, but they don’t have enough money for the toys or any of the fun stuff that they had before.”

Mapston raised more than $2,200 last year with his Clean Sheets Against Cancer fund. The money went toward the non-profit Children’s Cancer Research Fund.

He has also been involved in drives for Arizonans for Children, which supports kids in foster care.

For his efforts, Mapston stood out amongst a group of competitive Character Counts candidates.

The sophomore has yet to to decide where his scholarship money will go.

“I have no clue yet,” the sophomore said Monday before returning to the pitch.

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