Matthew Suk is always on the move, like a well-oiled soccer squad delivering crisp passes up field toward the net.
On the field and beyond, the Kirkland resident and senior at O’Dea High in Seattle maintains a busy schedule. He wouldn’t have it any other way.
“It’s just kind of my thing, I just don’t like to sit still for too long,” he said. “My motto in my life is ‘There is no time to waste time.’ So whenever I’m awake, I always feel like I need to do something productive and just try to better my community as much as I can.”
Four-year varsity competitor Suk, who plays primarily on defense, has helped lead the Fighting Irish to a third-place standing in the 16-team 3A Metro League with an 8-2-0 record at press time. They’re hoping to qualify for the state tournament next month, said the second-team all-Metro player last season. Suk was an all-Metro honorable mention his sophomore year.
Suk first kicked onto the soccer scene in second grade and began playing competitively in fourth grade.
“I just feel free out on the field, I have space to run. You just can be so creative on the soccer field, too,” the Crossfire Premier player said.
When the soccer captain steps away from the pitch, he’s got plenty of activities on his plate: school chaplain, National Honors Society president, Kirkland Youth Council member, school band director and founder of the school Korean Club.
Suk has received admissions and scholarships to six colleges and has narrowed it down to the University of Washington (admission) and Whitman College in Walla Walla (academic scholarship and soccer). They’re both great schools and it will be a hard decision for him to make, added Suk, who hopes to major in pre-health science to lead him into the dentistry field after graduation. At O’Dea — a Catholic all-boys school — he sports a 4.3 weighted grade-point average and a 3.94 unweighted average.
The local boy founded the Korean Club at O’Dea this year and said it took heaps of hard work to place it side by side with the other cultural clubs at the school.
“It’s kind of like my baby, something that I’ve kind of raised and kind of grew and developed. There’s a lot of people in the club now and I’m proud of it,” Suk said of the 35-member club.
Having music in his life is also crucial to Suk, who grew up playing violin, but since O’Dea doesn’t have an orchestra, he turned to the saxophone to keep the music flowing.
On the athletics front, soccer is Suk’s sports instrument of choice and his time at O’Dea has been a special experience.
“It’s been quite an adventure for the most part. I’ve made so many memories, so many friends and learned a lot from being on the soccer team and it’s my time to kind of try to improve the team,” said Suk, adding that the same thing goes for his community. “It’s kind of a mutual respect relationship I have.”
The Reporter asked Suk a series of questions for a behind-the-scenes glimpse into his life:
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
The bad things aren’t really all that bad. In the end, it’s actually something that kind of helps you out. Sometimes, it’s a lesson to be learned and then you just live off of that.
If you could go to dinner with one person, who would that be?
Pope Francis, I think he’d be a fun guy to go to dinner with.
What special skill would you like to learn?
I like watching people do art. I’m not so good at it, but that would be something cool I’d like to learn and develop my skill on. Drawing or even clay.
What super power would you like to have?
What’s your dream vacation spot?
I went to the Cayman Islands a few years ago and that was just absolutely beautiful, and that would be a place I’d love to go to again one day.
What’s your favorite movie of all time?
“Superbad” with Jonah Hill and Seth Rogen — super funny.