LCA track, then and now

Posted on 05. May, 2018 by in christian school track, Los Angeles, Santa Monica

Lighthouse-Christian-Academy-track

Brian Gutierrez, Moses Bowen and Hosea Ashcraft

By Michael Ashcraft —

In 2003, there was a track star on the Lighthouse Christian Academy team named Jonnie Adjei. He set three records in the CIF’s Coastal League in the Southern Section that have remained intact up to today.

Jonnie, who was from Africa, the son of a ministry leader associate with Lighthouse Church missions abroad, reportedly getting a scholarship to the university. He was called the “Galloping Ghanian.”

That is the history of Lighthouse track.

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Moses Bowen cruises in his race

Then 2015 came around. The Saints track program had long since been mothballed. Along came a new university age student named Lucas Moraida. He was looking for a smaller family church where he could be accountable and grow. He met and fell in love with a new convert named Xiovana. People called her simply “X.” They got married.

Lucas loved sports and started helping on the LCA football team.

He also liked track.

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Brian Gutierrez edges out Hosea Ashcraft

And that was the rebirth of LCA’s track program. Now in its second year, the LCA track program is coming along. We haven’t set new records, but on Friday, sophomore Levi Photenhauer turned on the afterburner on the second lap of the to burn all competition and win the 800 meters in Omega League. He ran 2:19 — “pretty darn good for a sophomore,” Coach Lucas says.

Yeah, the kid is fast. And he doesn’t get tired. Ever.

“There’s a lot of new runners with a lot of potential,” Lucas says. “We’re progressing well. Based on the amount we are able to practice and all that, I’m positive about the progress.”

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Levi, far right, on his winning race

Lucas learned track in high school and then at Santa Monica College, but his season was cut short due to academic ineligibility for excessive studying. Middle school teacher Rachel Peterson started a track program a few years back, and Lucas volunteered to help. When Rachel left, he took over. He now coaches both Middle and High school.

Last year, Levi placed as a freshman. Marcus Scribner, the only other returning runner, was working out the stiffness from football runs that impeded his track, which needs looseness, Lucas says. “This year he’s loose and running fast,” coach says.

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Levi Photenhauer and Moses Bowen

At Lighthouse, any sport is going to be second to football. The senior pastor, Rob Scribner, overseeing all Lighthouse ministries including LCA, played for the LA Rams many years ago.

“It’s like pulling teeth to get kids to join the team in the first place,” Lucas says. “They think it’s just running and they’re scared to run. When someone says track, they think of running in the hot sun and being tired when there’s actually a lot more that goes into it.”

 

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Soccer star Erhan Meric

When will LCA be breaking records again in track?

Jonnie’s records: boys 100 m dash 10:74, boys long jump 23-00, boys 200 m dash 21:94.

When will Lighthouse be breaking records again?

It’s something to look forward to.

lighthouse christian academy track

Pastor Ralph Bowen is goofing off. Coach Lucas Moraida poses with Hosea Ashcraft

 

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