Inexperienced harriers set to run for Trojans

By Becky Walz,

The Turkey Valley boys’ track and field team will be virtually untested as it gets the 2021 season underway with just one state qualifier returning to the roster.
In his 23rd season at the helm is Head Coach Mark Scott.

Lost and gained
In 2019, the Trojans made some noise at the Upper Iowa Conference meet, finishing third, winning the 4×800 relay and finishing second in the distance medley relay. A week later, three events qualified for the Blue Oval at Drake Stadium. Finishing the season in Des Moines, the distance medley of Ryan Olsen, Kade Kruse, Eli Nymeyer and Elliott Dietzenbach crossed the finish line sixth to score the lone points of the state meet for TV. Also racing was the 4×800 relay of Seth Huinker, Nymeyer, Kalvin Langreck and Dietzenbach. The 4×400 quartet of Huinker, Nymeyer, Kruse and Dietzenbach also competed.
With last season cancelled, the talent and leadership of the 2020 seniors who would have been competing was lost. Among those graduating was a host of state experience in Elliot Dietzenbach, Eli Nymeyer, Seth Huinker, Kade Kruse, Eli Reicks, Keegan Balk, Dylan Elsbernd, Isaac Franzen and Kannon Leuenberger.
Left standing for the Trojans from the 4×800 state-qualifying team in 2019 is senior Kalvin Langreck. Joining him is a quartet of juniors that has seen varied successes including Marcus Herold, Collin Kleppe, Dale Schwamman and Dylan Reicks.
Sophomores looking to fill in the voids include Robert Kruse, Noah Hanson, Troy Schmitt, Calvin Bodensteiner, Treyton Hulbert, Chase Hayek, Garrett Dietzenbach, Carson Busta, Colby Simpkins and Ryan Franzen. Rounding out the roster are freshmen Russell Nieman, Burke Busta, Sawyer Wickham and Oliver Schmitt.

The unknown
“Our sophomores are basically freshmen since the spring sports were cancelled in 2020, leaving us very little experience. Depth in the hurdle and jumping field events is a definite weakness,” said Coach Scott. “As our young runners mature, I feel we will be competitive in the relays.”

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