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LA Galaxy Pre-Season Scrimmage vs Vissel Kobe.

Lompoc native Julian Araujo competes for the LA Galaxy in a preseason scrimmage against Vissel Kobe at Dignity Health Sports Park on Feb. 5. 

Be proud, Lompoc. Be proud of Julian Araujo.

Following the 2016-17 season, Araujo made the gutsy decision to leave Lompoc High School and the Lompoc Valley to pursue his professional soccer dreams. He was only a 15-year-old sophomore when he made that choice.

And on the first day of March, his dream was fulfilled in writing a new contract.

He’s signed his deal with the Los Angeles Galaxy…and will soon kick and defend inside Dignity Health Sports Park.

And Araujo headlines this version of Zo’s Gold Mines.

This town has seen so many names come from the city of not even 50,000 people who have still made it to the professional ranks. We know these names as Napolean Kaufman, Lavon Coleman, Tommy Thompson, Ryan Church, Don Willis, Danny Duffy, Lydell Sargeant, Vai Taua, etc.

And now, it’s time to add Araujo to the growing list of Lompoc residents who will witness the pro stage.

If there was ever a time to buy a Galaxy soccer jersey on Ebay or through the team store, now is a good time to do so. Araujo has given the city a new reason to follow Major League Soccer.

Other gold mines:

Armani Garcia, Santa Ynez softball: The already-decorated junior pitcher for the Pirates can now add this season highlight: A no-hitter against Cabrillo, which occurred in Santa Ynez’s 6-0 shutout victory on Friday.

Lompoc High softball: The Braves looked near flawless in just five innings of play on Friday. That was all during their 17-0 romp of Santa Barbara. Lompoc has scored a combined 35 runs in the last three games.

Key-annah Pu'a, Nipomo High softball: Like Garcia, she also didn't allow a single hit in the Titans' 24-1 romp of Coast Union on Friday. Pu'a only surrendered her run through a lead-off walk. Offensively, she was a perfect 3-of-3 at the plate with a two-run triple. 

Tyler Rasmussen, Santa Ynez baseball: He drove three runners home and struck out three batters in five innings during the Pirates’ 11-1 win over Cabrillo on Friday.

Henry Allen and Jacob Thielst, Santa Ynez boys swimming: Despite the loss to San Marcos on Friday, Allen and Thielst claimed first place in two events: Allen in the 200-meter freestyle in 1:52.77 and Thielst in the 100 back at 1:03.85. Both also teamed with Jace Grieco and Jake Healy to win the 4x50 free relay in 1:36.62.

Siena Lageman, Santa Ynez girls swimming: She was the lone solo winner for the Pirates girls swim team against San Marcos – racing to a first-place mark of 2:19.98 in the 200 free.

Noe Carlos, St. Joseph baseball: The junior smacked one home run to help lift the Knights to their first victory of the season, a 6-4 win, over Templeton on Wednesday.

Righetti High baseball: Facing an Arroyo Grande team that was unbeaten and collected 30 combined runs to start the season, the Warriors blanked the Eagles 7-0 on Wednesday – ending the Eagles’ unbeaten start and scoring outbursts.

Chris Campos, Cabrillo boys soccer: Campos is off to a nice start for a fast-improving boys volleyball team at CHS. The senior pounded six kills and delivered four service aces in the 3-0 sweep of Orcutt Academy on Tuesday night. 

Glenn Jordan, Hancock College men’s basketball: Facing elimination and a possible first round exit in the state playoffs, Jordan lit up San Diego Miramar with 21 points in the thrilling 77-74 victory at Bob White Gymnasium on Wednesday.

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Lorenzo J. Reyna covers sports for Lee Central Coast Newspapers, particularly in the Lompoc Valley. He can be reached at