Chaminade Filmmakers Celebrated at Calabasas Film Festival

Chaminade filmmakers were celebrated on September 25 at the Calabasas Film Festival, taking home two awards at the Student Film screening. CURVEBALL won for Best Ensemble, and Passion Washington won Best Writing for ON IN FIVE. “It feels good knowing that a film I made is able to be selected for a festival,” says Passion. “I think it’s an uplifting story. The theme is to never give up and never stop trying and that resonates with people.” This is Passion’s second year in a row winning at the Calabasas Film Festival — last year, she took home the award for Best Editing.

The Calabasas Film Festival showcases major film premieres, student films, documentaries, and top-quality film selections from all genres.

Luke Rawnskey ’24, Nathan Michael ’24, and Passion Washington ’23 attended the festival with their families and film teacher, Ms. Karen Ann Thumm. “We are so proud of our Chaminade filmmakers!” says Ms. Thumm. “Their films looked great on the big screen!”

The following Chaminade films were selected for the Calabasas Film Festival, which was held September 21-25. You can watch all these plus more on the Chaminade Studios YouTube channel.

  • ON IN FIVE, Created by Abby Lopez, Passion Washington, Miles Morewitz, Nathan Michael, and Lorenzo Ghaffari with Sophia Nations
  • CURVEBALL, Created by Charlee Friedman, Abby Lopez, Chapin Reece, Branden Hollenstein-Davis, and Christopher Fase
  • HOW I SEE YOU AGAIN, Created by Cici Fang
  • HUNDRED BUCKS, Created by Roman Daponde, Hogan Henze, Bradley Rosenthal, Xian Dean, and Jack Quirk
  • MONITORED, Created by Drew Duncan, Lola Marks, Kiera Durand, Grace Rissolo, Natalie Djie, and Luke Rawnsley
  • WANTED, Created by Passion Washington, Mia Elizondo, Nick Cuevas, Chapin Reece, Gio Gonzalez, and Michael Carpenter
  • YOUR LITTLE GIRL, Created by Hannah Sperling

Chaminade College Preparatory High School Head Football Coach Ed Croson Retires; Associate Head Coach David Machuca Named Successor

Chaminade College Preparatory announces the retirement of high school head football coach Ed Croson.

Coach Croson first began his career at Chaminade in 1989 after coaching at Southern Utah State University, Los Angeles Pierce College, Notre Dame High School, and St. Genevieve High School. He served as Chaminade’s athletic director from 1993-1998 and became head football coach in 1998. Coach Croson left Chaminade in 2000 to coach at Birmingham High School. In 2009, he returned to Chaminade, taking over a program that had only won two games the previous year.

In the 13 years since Coach Croson’s return, the Eagles have earned the MaxPreps designation of All-Decade 2009-2019 and California State Top 20 (ranked #17). They played in the CIF-SS quarterfinals in 2009 (7-5-0) and the semifinals in 2010 (11-3-0) and 2011 (10-3-0). Chaminade won the Mission League title and reached the CIF-SS finals in 2012 (12-2-0). In 2013, the program won the CIF-SS and California State title (14-2-0). Recently, the Eagles qualified for the CIF-SS Division 1 playoffs in 2015, 2017, 2018, the Division 1 quarterfinals in 2016, and the Division 2 finals in 2019. They also won Mission League titles in 2017 and 2020.

Every year since 2010, Chaminade has finished in the California State Top 50 (out of 1,100 competing high schools). Los Angeles Daily News has ranked the Eagles in the Top 10 every week since September 2009, including #1 in 2012 and 2013, and #2 in 2016 and 2020. Cal-Hi Sports named Coach Croson the 2013 California State High School Coach of the Year, and on October 1, 2021, he netted his 200th career win with Chaminade against Cathedral High School.

Mindful of Chaminade’s Catholic, Marianist mission, Coach Croson implemented a team Mass and meal before every game. He is proud to have sent 83 Eagles to play for Division 1, 2, 3 schools, as well as Ivy League colleges. “Chaminade is immensely thankful to Coach Croson for his shepherding of hundreds of young players over the years, and indebted to him for putting Eagle football on the map,” said Chaminade high school Principal Luis R. Guerra.

David Machuca, current associate head coach, will take over for Coach Croson. Coach Machuca has enjoyed two stints at Chaminade: between 2009-2011, when he helped the Eagles to back-to-back semifinal appearances; and since 2017, during which the Eagles were CIF-SS Division 2 finalists (2019) and won the Mission League title (2020). Coach Machuca and his wife Kristen have two young sons, Shane and Dylan, and a newborn daughter, Reagan. Mr. Guerra expressed that, “Chaminade is excited and blessed to welcome Coach Machuca into his new role as head coach. His passion for Chaminade football, and desire to build upon Coach Croson’s legacy of developing young players for lives of service, will tremendously benefit our program. With his strong understanding of Chaminade’s mission and culture, and reputation as a relationship-builder, Coach Machuca will work in partnership with his players and their families to advance the tradition of Eagle excellence.”

Jordan Axani Comes to Chaminade April 8

Jordan Axani has a long track record of bold acts that move and inspire people. His unique background and immense vulnerability have made Jordan a sought-after speaker on mental wellness and leadership. To learn more about Jordan, visit jordanaxani.com.

The Chaminade Wellness Program welcomes Jordan Axani, mental wellness and leadership expert, Monday, April 8, to speak to parents, students and teachers about the biggest problems facing our mental wellness.

During his visit, Jordan will give the following presentations:

  • Middle School: What’s Your Big Truth?
    Jordan shares stories and lessons of his struggles with letting his family and friends in on some of his mental health challenges and ways to cope by being open and honest.
  • High School: What’s Your Big Lie? 
    Jordan focuses on the mental health struggles that affect high school students today and offers coping skills such as acceptance, peer support, and awareness of local mental health resources.
  • Parent Presentation
    5:30 p.m. Reception  |  6:00 -7:00 p.m. Presentation

    Tutor Family Center for the Performing Arts, West Hills campus
    Jordan talks about the state of mental health in teenagers and discusses how parents can better communicate with their children on this important topic. All parents with a student(s) in grades 6-12 are encouraged to attend. Click here to RSVP for the parent presentation.

This event is made possible by funds raised from the 2018 Chaminade Gala Benefit and Auction providing Chaminade the tools to expand our vision to develop resilient young men and women who can advocate for themselves and successfully balance school life.

Four Eagle Wrestlers Head to State Championship

After three weeks of qualifying tournaments from Mission League to CIF Divisional’s to CIF Master’s Regional’s, four Eagle wrestlers punched their tickets to the California State Championships February 21-23. States is one of the most prestigious athletic events in California. Out of more than 900 schools and 27,000 wrestlers in the state, only 2% of wrestlers ever reach this level of competition.

It has been a record-setting year for the Chaminade’s wrestling team. Under the direction of coach Bill Wilson and assistant coach Vlad Kochiev, Chaminade qualified 12 wrestlers out of 14 weight classes for CIF tournaments in a single season. The team also qualified for the CIF Dual Championships and is ranked 21st in the state.

Through the sweat, blood, tears, and grueling tournaments here are the four remaining eagles and their weight class achievements and rankings:

Patrick Rowland ’19 has shown tremendous growth in the last four years. Introduced to wrestling at Chaminade’s middle school, Patrick (138-pounds) got serious when he entered 9th grade. This season, he is Mission League Champion, 3rd at CIF, placed 9th at CIF Masters and is currently ranked 12th in the state. Rowland will go on to wrestle for Duke University.

Erich Osteen ’19 is no stranger to the tournament circuit. Erich (220-pounds) has been wrestling since the age of six, and it’s his third time at States. He is Mission League Champion, CIF Champion, and placed 2nd at CIF Masters. Erich is currently ranked 3rd in the state and is committed to play football for UCLA next season.

Zeth Romney ’22 is at the beginning of his high school wrestling career and is showing that he is a contender with which to be reckoned. Zeth (106- pounds) is Mission League Champion, CIF Champion, and placed 3rd at CIF Masters. He is currently ranked 8th in the state.

Katja Osteen ’21 is the only girl on the Chaminade wrestling team. Like her brother, she has been wrestling from a very young age she began at only four-years-old. In 2018, Katia (160-pound) became the school’s first State Champion in wrestling. This year she is CIF Champion and Masters Champion. She is currently ranked 1st in the state.

For up to the minute State Championship coverage, follow the Chaminade Wrestling team on twitter @nadewrestling.

Chaminade Students Join Other Catholic High School Students for Year of Mercy Service Event

Last week Chaminade College Preparatory LIFE Team members, Anagette San Roman ’17 and Daniella Torres ’17 participated in a joint service project with other San Fernando Region Catholic high schools at the Fred Jordan Mission on Skid Row.

Students from Chaminade, Notre Dame, Crespi, Louisville, Holy Family, Flintridge Sacred Heart, and Alemany volunteered for the mission’s annual Back to School event. Back to School provides Los Angeles Unified School District students with new clothing, shoes, socks, backpacks, school supplies, haircuts, hygiene kits, and food. The high school volunteers stuffed backpacks with school supplies, and handed them out; as well as passed out clothing and other personal care items.

Following the event, volunteers attended Mass at Our Lady of the Angels Cathedral in celebration of the culmination of the Year of Mercy.