WILTON, Iowa–Though the Wilton Trap Team has not had the opportunity to compete at the Iowa Scholastic Clay Target Program’s state trapshooting championship since 2019, team members consistent practice over the past year made it impossible to tell. During this year’s state championship from June 8 through 13, Wilton’s students demonstrated their skills, bringing a number of honors home with them.
Earlier this month, 36 athletes joined the 2,630 trap shooters on 133 teams from across the state who came to the championship to put their skills to the test. A team encompassing a wide range of ages, the Wilton Trap Team had participants in several different age brackets, including intermediate for sixth graders or first time middle school students, junior varsity for ninth graders and first time high school students, and varsity for experienced 10th through 12th graders.
In all divisions and events, students did well. In men’s singles events, Kaden Hodge took fourth place in the intermediate-advanced division and Hunter Beason earned sixth place in the intermediate division. In ladies’ singles events, Lexi Henning placed fourth in the intermediate-advanced division.
In men’s singles competition, Hunter took first place as an intermediate entry. Carter Drake Metzger earned third place in the intermediate-advanced division. For handicap events, Lexi earned fourth place in the intermediate-advanced category, and Carter and Hunter earned first place in the intermediate-advanced and intermediate divisions respectively. As a team, Wilton took first place in both the intermediate doubles and handicap categories.
To top off the team’s success, Cole Henning distinguished himself in several areas, earning sixth place in men’s varsity singles, and taking first place in men’s varsity doubles with a perfect score of 100, likely the first one in the tournament’s history. Additionally, Cole earned the distinction of high all around male and all-state team member, two of the championship’s most prestigious honors.
Reflecting back on his team’s performance at the state trapshooting championship, coach Mark Henning believed the students had really made a name for themselves and Wilton’s trapshooting program overall. “The number of awards the Wilton Trap Team earned at this competition has definitely put the team on the map in the trapshooting community as well as drawn attention from many college recruiters,” he stated.
Along with their success at state, the Wilton Trap Team saw great success in their own league as well. For the year, Cole placed fourth overall in varsity, Lodden Axtell placed fourth in junior varsity, Kaden Hodge placed second in intermediate-advanced, Hunter Beason placed fourth in intermediate, and Gavin Wulf placed fourth in rookie (for fifth grade students) in men’s singles. In ladies’ singles intermediate-advanced Lexie placed first and Teghan Johnston placed fifth.
For doubles events, Cole placed first in men’s varsity and Hunter placed first in men’s intermediate. In the ladies’ division, Lexie placed first in the intermediate-advanced category. In men’s handicap, Cole earned first in varsity, Lodden earned first in junior varsity, Kaden earned second in intermediate-advanced, and Hunter earned first in intermediate. Lexi earned first place in ladies’ intermediate-advanced handicap as well. As a team, senior squad won fourth place in singles and intermediate won first. The intermediate squad won first in doubles as well. In handicap, the senior squad won third and the intermediate claimed first place.