Prep Sports

Tipton's Caleb Shumaker charges to victory at the Solon Invitational

After a 3rd-place finish at state last year, he's still far from satisfied

Tipton's Caleb Shumaker closes in on the finish in the boys' race at the Solon Invitational cross country meet at the So
Tipton’s Caleb Shumaker closes in on the finish in the boys’ race at the Solon Invitational cross country meet at the Solon Recreation and Nature Area on Monday. Shumaker won in 16:29. (Rebecca F. Miller/The Gazette)
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SOLON — Caleb Shumaker’s mood didn’t fit the occasion.

Sure, he was happy his team had just won a second consecutive state championship. But when he was cornered in the clubhouse at Lakeside Golf Course last fall, he was awash in disappointment.

“I really had high hopes,” he recalled Monday. “I wanted to win (an individual) state championship (he finished third). But I didn’t have that extra boost in the last mile that you need.”

Time will tell if that boost is there down the road in Fort Dodge. It wasn’t necessary Monday.

A senior at Tipton High School, Shumaker jetted to the front quickly and rolled up a 32-second winning margin at the Solon Invitational cross country meet at the Solon Recreation and Nature Area.

He was clocked in 16 minutes, 29 seconds.

“I started out kind of easy,” he said. “I wanted to run with my guys for a while. I wanted to get out and run the first mile in 5 minutes, maybe 5:10, then see how I felt after that.”

He felt just fine: “The weather was beautiful. You can’t beat this,” he beamed.

Tipton lost three of its top four runners from last year’s team and is currently ranked No. 5 in Class 2A. But Shumaker’s ultimate individual goal remains very much in play.

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“I want to win state,” he said. “Eric Lenz was the last one (from Tipton) to do it (in 2014), and this has been my goal since Day 1.”

A college coach had his ear for a while after the race, but Shumaker isn’t ready for any kind of decision on his future.

“I haven’t put too much thought into it,” he said. “My parents tell me to focus on this season, then worry about that stuff later.”

Solon’s boys and Bettendorf’s girls won close team races. The Spartans had four boys in the top 12, led by fourth-place Gabe Hinman, and tallied 52 points to top Bettendorf (59) and Mount Vernon-Lisbon (64).

Individual girls’ champion Hannah Bientema (19:28) led Bettendorf to the girls’ crown with 52 points. Solon (53) was second; Williamsburg (64) was third.

Solon’s Kiersten Conway was the runner-up in 19:55.

“I definitely had a little extra adrenaline today,” Conway said. “All of my friends and family were here. I’ve run on this course for six years, back to middle school.

“I used to think I disliked it, but I’ve really grown to appreciate it.”

Williamsburg’s Ruth Jennings was fourth.

SOLON INVITATIONAL

Girls Results

Teams — 1. Bettendorf 52, 2. Solon 53, 3. Williamsburg 64, 4. Mount Vernon-Lisbon 99, 5. Tipton 106, 6. Davenport North 156, 7. DeWitt Central 209.

Individuals — 1. Hannah Bientema (Bett), 19:28; 2. Kiersten Conway (Solon), 19:55; 3. Emily See (Bett), 20:08; 4. Ruth Jennings (Wmsbg), 20:10; 5. Sami Foht (Bett), 20:10; 6. Kayla Overton (DN), 20:40; 7. Laura Swart (MVL), 20:43; 8. Mary Fiala (Solon), 20:44; 9. Macey Marovets (Wmsbg), 20:51; 10. Gracie Federspiel (Solon), 20:58.

Boys Results

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Teams — 1. Solon 52, Bettendorf 59, 3. Mount Vernon-Lisbon 64, 4. Tipton 74, 5. Williamsburg 114, 6. Davenport North 153, 7. DeWitt Central 185.

Individuals — 1. Caleb Shumaker (Tipton), 16:29; 2. Nick Moore (Bett), 17:01; 3. Chase Wakefield (Bett), 17:06; 4. Gabe Hinman (Solon), 17:12; 5. Zach Fall (MVL), 17:16; 6. Tyler Bilskie (Solon), 17:16; 7. Cody Bohlmann (Tipton), 17:30; 8. Eli Dickson (MVL), 17:30; 9. Brick Kabela (Solon), 17:32; 10. Carter Wolf (Bett), 17:41.

Comments: (319) 368-8857; jeff.linder@thegazette.com

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