Caleb Strom doesn’t just walk the walk, he runs with it.
The Princeton senior uses a mix of strong faith and a passion for track to excel. He can turn as close as his Bible to find a direct correlation between the two.
“My life verse is 1st Corinthians 9:24 which states ‘all runners run in a race, but only one obtains the prize. Run in such a way you may win,’” Strom said. “My walk with Christ requires work, discipline and motivation. Likewise track requires me to not slack off and keep at workouts and races. I need to live my life for Christ, I need to run the race in order to win, not to lose.”
He runs the race well on the track. He was one of only two athletes to lead this year’s BCR Track and Field Honor Roll in three individual events. He was a state qualifier in Class 2A.
And now he is the 2014 BCR Track and Field Athlete of the year.
PHS coach Dan Foes said Strom was an outstanding leader in the Tiger Track program for four years.
“Caleb has always had a great love and passion for track and field,” Foes said. “Caleb has been a positive influence on his younger teammates. He will truly be missed. We wish him the best as he moves forward with his college track experience.”
Strom qualified for 2A State in the 200 meters with a Honor Roll Best time of 22.62. He also finished on top the Honor Roll in the 100 (11.1) and long jump (21-0).
While the road to state would have been likely been easier and more bountiful in Class 1A (he had qualifying marks for 1A in all three events), Strom is happy to have gone through the 2A ranks. It’s helped make him the competitor he is.
“As much as I say I dislike being in 2A, it made me work harder and compete harder to get betters times and distances,” he said. “Would I have gone to state in more events if we were 1A? Most likely. However, I don’t think my times would have been as good as they are now because of the higher competition.”
His favorite event is the 200, because he said it was an event he could give his full attention to.
“The relays, 100 and long jump were all back to back and had no time to focus on an event. The 200 I could give my full attention to and drive to get a better time,” he said.
Strom this past season has been his favorite at PHS.
“We had the best team dynamic we have ever had in my four years at PHS,” he said. “The separation between seniors and freshmen were non existent. We ran, we competed and we won as one, and I loved it. We may not have been the fastest team, but we worked the hardest. We competed the hardest. Every event, every meet we had to perform at 110 percent to get the points we needed.”
Strom will be running for Bethel College in Mishawaka, Ind., next year. He plans to study Christian ministries and obtain a Masters of Christian Ministries.
While he considered attending Judson University and Grace College, he was sold on Bethel and coach Tony Natali.
“The biggest factor was coach Natali and his staff,” Strom said. “He has such a drive for competition, while also giving glory to God. Everything else was icing on the cake. I’m extremely excited to be part of the Bethel program, I get to continue doing what I love at a higher level.”