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Alex Lima really likes running on Lyons’ relays

When Alex Lima isn’t running, he’s usually helping out at his father’s church.

But the Lyons junior plans do plenty of running this summer, which might cut into his time as a band member and volunteer in the youth ministry at Elim Pentacostal Church in Oak Park, where his father, Alex Lima Sr., is pastor.

His younger sister, Zuri Lima, is a Lyons freshman who plays piano and Alex Lima plays drums in the church band, which rehearses on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

“I have a lot of fun,” he said. “All of the hours I spend at the church is reflected in my running. God gives me the power to run.”

Alex Lima’s father opened a branch of the church and also has a family medical practice on the Northwest side of Chicago. One of the church’s major year-round projects is Food on the Table, a program that distributes food to the needy around the Chicago area.

The younger Alex Lima has not decided what he to pursue after high school.

“I think I’ll always stick around with the church, but not take over as a pastor,” he said. “I will always help around the church.”

Alex Lima finished his track and field season with two additional medals at the Class 3A state meet Saturday in Charleston. That earned him the most state medals in relays in Lyons boys history.

His fifth-place finish in the 3,200-meter relay and ninth in the 1,600 Saturday gave Alex Lima four career state medals. In 2013, he placed sixth in the 3,200 relay and ninth in the 1,600.

His teammates on the 3,200 relay (7:47.28) were seniors Ed McCarter and Dan Lupano and junior Ben Gawthrop. The 1,600 relay (3:20.72) included seniors Jimmy Rhode and Matt Grider and junior Trevor Edgerton.

“I love it. It’s been so much fun the past thee years at LT,” Alex Lima said. “So far, I enjoy it. I hope to have success next season.”

This summer, he will train for cross country and expects to run 7-9 miles each day and around 150 miles over the next few months.

“I expect [Alex Lima] to take a leadership role in cross country and track next year as a senior,” Lyons coach Michael Danner said. “He is a great relay runner and competitor.”

Alex Lima did not run well enough to qualify for a starting role on Lyons’ cross country team last fall at state, but hopes to earn a varsity spot as a senior. He feels more confortable running relays.

“I don’t know why. I don’t like individual events. I love to run relays where you depend on your teammates,” he said.