Senior Donce’ Lewis plays football and runs track for Crenshaw high school (Amanda Scurlock/L.A. Sentinel)

Crenshaw senior quarterback Donce’ Lewis helped lead the Cougars football team to the CIF City Section Championship for two consecutive seasons. During his junior year, he helped the Cougars win the City Section title.

Lewis led the Cougars to an 11-3 overall record and a 4-1 Coliseum League record this past season. His efforts earned him Coliseum League MVP honors and All-City Offensive MVP honors.

Lewis started playing football at six and tried playing quarterback at eight. He played youth football for the Crenshaw Colts and Rams. He began playing as a signal caller for Crenshaw High School by his sophomore year. He believes his work ethic won him the spot.

“No matter what, I wasn’t quitting,” Lewis said.

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He led the team mainly through his actions and the team reflected his effort and energy. Coaches advised Lewis to keep his spirits high for the sake of his teammates.

“I’m the one that’s gonna do the right thing first. I’m not really a vocal leader,” Lewis said. “The team moves off me. If I’m down, the team’s gonna be down; if I’m up, the team’s gonna be up.”

During his junior year, Lewis was sidelined with a broken wrist. Watching the Cougars struggle in his absence made him rip away at his cast so he could get back on the field. He was eventually allowed to play in his cast. His family, coaches, and teammates supported him as he recovered.

“I was able to still run around the track and condition to still be in shape,” Lewis said. “Then at home, I couldn’t keep my head down.”

Lewis led the Cougars to a state championship appearance that season.

Lewis feels privileged to be a student athlete, mentioning how difficult it is to master both endeavors at the same time.

“Not everybody’s able to do both and maintain both for a long time,” Lewis said. “A lot of athletes, they don’t have the grades or some might have the grades but they’re not really athletic.”

In his youth, he played basketball along with football. As a high school student, he got into track and field, running the 200m and 400m. Competing in track and field helps his stamina for football.

“I’d be in games and in late third quarter, going into the fourth, a lot of teams, they’d be gassed, they’d be cramping,” Lewis said. “I had just come off a seventy-yard run, don’t even be tired for it.”

In November, he along with his teammates distributed meals in a Thanksgiving dinner giveaway.

Lewis is currently taking AP English and Biology. His favorite class is psychology. Since the end of the football season, Lewis works for Team Heal as an athletic trainer for the Crenshaw boys’ basketball team.

Lewis aspires to have proficient academic standing by the time he graduates.

“Right now, I hope I finish the school year with a 4.0,” Lewis said. “That’s all I want right now.”