OSKALOOSA — The Statesmen shotgun sports team will look to build off an impressive inaugural campaign as its heads into the 2021-2022 season.
Head Coach Steve Heaton more than doubled last year’s squad, a crew that won five separate events, highlighted by the SCTP State Sporting Clays title. Numerous individuals claimed High Overall Athlete honors as well with Christopher Berkshire-Lewis (Jr., Kansas City, Mo., Business Management) taking the SCTP Sporting Clays title.
Team members will compete in several different disciplines this season, most notably American Skeet, American Trap, and Sporting Clays.
In addition to Berkshire-Lewis, Bryon Baca (Sr., Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Maclane Heinen (So., Pella, Iowa, Business Management) return to bolster a talented group of returners that will set the tone early on in the season. Jarrett DeKoning (So., Grinnell, Iowa, Public Accounting and Business Management) also had a strong first season in the navy and gold, while Madison Hutchings (So., Herriman, Utah, Business Management) and Breale McFarland (So., Rio Rancho, N.M., Education) headed the women’s shooters.
Not resting on their laurels, the Statesmen were extremely active on the recruiting trails, signing 13 new members to the roster. Heaton has been beyond pleased with how the team has come together and with the depth of the recruiting class.
While all will get an opportunity to showcase their abilities, several individuals have come to the forefront in preseason practices. Raylee Bishop, Mathew Brindley, Jake Campbell (Fr., Norwalk, Iowa), Dryden DeKoning (Fr., Newton, Iowa), Kade Dunkin (Fr., Hamilton, Iowa), KayLynn Sieber (Fr., Marshall, Minn., Biology), Lane Arrowood (Fr., Newton, Iowa, Biology) and Dominick Ver Meer have all been strong early.
WPU starts the campaign Saturday at the Iowa College Shotgun Shooting Conference in Cedar Falls. The event is one of nine in the fall, which also includes a home meet on Oct. 2-3 as William Penn hosts the William Penn Invitational at Black Oak Clays in Pella. The SCTP Nationals event is set for Oct. 5-10 in Marengo, Ohio.
The Statesmen add five more tournaments in the spring, concluding with the ACUI National Championship in Texas in March.