Leadership and work ethic are at the heart of how Orange Lutheran senior Logan Mills approaches each aspect of being a Lancer. The four-year varsity track and field team member has seen first hand how a focused approach to his training for the long jump and triple jump events has produced desired results.
I [get] to see a lot more of getting out what I put in,” says Mills of his jump training. “The harder I pushed myself, the better I would see in the results of my jumps.”
In recent months, as OLu’s track and field program has transitioned in a new coaching staff, Mills has stepped up as a mentor to work with his younger teammates. Due to the specific and specialized nature of jump events, he feels that sharing the intricacies behind what he has learned can only improve the team. And he’s always up for running a sprint or relay event to help the Lancers earn points.
“Logan is the epitome of what a coach looks for in a leader and team captain,” says OLu head distance coach, Kristen Goossens. “He is always willing to participate in any event, especially if it means he is contributing to the betterment of our team.”
Mills spent the initial months of the Covid-19 pandemic recovering from a hamstring injury he sustained last spring at the season’s start. The time away from organized competition led to him finding new interests, such as rock climbing and surfing.
Considering all that has happened in the last 15 months, Mills is embracing his senior year. The 18-year old joined OLu’s surf team, is in his second year as an Ignite Mentor and is the current Missions Co-President, a role that has allowed him to lead others as they explore the impact of their faith in the community.
“It’s actually really strengthened my faith and shown me how I can use my faith in my daily life,” says Mills of OLu’s Missions program. “Orange Lutheran has done such a great job of integrating students’ faith into their daily lives, rather than it just being two separate things.”
Heading into Trinity League track and field finals next week, Mills is looking to finish top three in both the long jump and triple jump events. But regardless of the outcome, and despite the challenges of the last year, he knows that God is in control.
“It’s been a rollercoaster,” says Mills. “I’ve gone through a bunch of seasons of anger with God and asking why. But through that, I’ve come to realize he really only wants the best for me…as there is always something to learn in those situations.”
Mills is headed to Baylor University in the fall where he will study business and possibly walk on to the track and field team for the Bears. He credits his club coach, Keinan Briggs, with helping him keep a positive mindset and see the good in all situations. His family has also been instrumental as motivators and role models.
“My parents are my biggest source of authority and leadership,” says Mills. “They are both very strong in their faith, so I can turn to them at any point…and my grandma and grandpa, they’ve really taught me the value of family.”