Winners of Sporting Clays and Skeet, the Statesmen took the overall title by 59 shots

WAUKEE — The Statesmen shotgun sports team wrapped up a jaw-dropping fall campaign by dominating the Iowa SCTP State Championship Saturday and Sunday.

William Penn placed first out of eight team by hitting 1,551 out of 1,750 total targets (88.6%). Wartburg was second at 1,492 targets.

The title is the fifth for the program this fall. Included in that dominance was 14 discipline crowns.

Saturday’s action began with Sporting Clays and the navy and gold defended their state title with a score of 395-for-500. Dominick Ver Meer (Fr., Pella, Iowa, Mechanical Engineering) led all shooters at 87-for-100, while Mathew Brindley (Fr., Earlham, Iowa, Industrial Technology) was second overall at 81-for-100 and Kade Dunkin (Fr., Hamilton, Iowa) was fifth at 77-for-100.

Noah Seelye (Fr., Pella, Iowa, Mechanical Engineering) and Bryon Baca (Sr., Colorado Springs, Colo.) each posted marks of 75-for-100 to also score for WPU. Raylee Bishop (Fr., Ankeny, Iowa, Engineering Technology) ended up third among female competitors.

After some issues with the field breaking down, Saturday’s Trap competition was concluded at dusk. Despite the difficult conditions, the Statesmen still placed second at 479-for-500, missing the crown by two shots.

Dryden DeKoning (Fr., Newton, Iowa, Business Management) and his 97-for-100 score was best for William Penn and second-best overall. Dunkin and Baca were next at 96-for-100, while Bishop and Christopher Berkshire-Lewis (Jr., Kansas City, Mo., Business Management) each finished at 95-for-100.

Bishop led all females in Trap, while Caytlin Pendleton (Fr., West Jordan, Utah, Communications) was second at 94-for-100. KayLynn Sieber (Fr., Marshall, Minn., Biology), in fourth place, and Ashley Hunter (Fr., Indianola, Iowa), in fifth place, also posted strong outings.

Strong winds, among other unfavorable weather conditions, made for another difficult shoot on Sunday, but WPU persevered by taking the Skeet title at 473-for-500. Ver Meer once again was tops for his crew at 98-for-100, while Hunter Lucas (Jr., Washington, Iowa) (95-for-100), Brindley (94-for-100, and Seelye and Bishop (both 93-for-100) rounded out the team’s scoring.

Ver Meer paced all student-athletes with Lucas coming in fifth, while Bishop won the top female award. Holly Boeke (Fr., Oskaloosa, Iowa, Biology) and Sieber placed third and fourth, respectively.

The Championship concluded with William Penn earning its second silver, doing so in Super Sporting at 204-for-250. Seelye and Sieber headlined the squad with identical scores of 42-for-50, while Berkshire-Lewis (41-for-50), Brindley (40-for-50), and Lane Arrowood (Fr., Newton, Iowa, Biology) (39-for-50) also got on the scoreboard.

While Seelye’s performance was good for fourth overall, Sieber topped the female leaderboard.

Bishop finished the weekend as the Female High Overall Athlete. Sieber finished second, while Boeke was fourth. On the men’s side, Ver Meer was runner-up and Brindley placed fifth.

“What a great way to close out our fall season,” Head Coach Steve Heaton said. “I am beyond proud of how our team handled the pressure and how they handled themselves as young adults. Most of all, I am proud just watching them grow as a team and family. I love the bond and backing this team has for one another.”

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