By Julie Johansen
Over 250 contestants competed at Utah’s largest rodeo, the Utah High School Rodeo state finals, Wednesday through Saturday at the Wasatch Events Complex in Heber City.
The competition was divided in each respective event over six rodeos. On Saturday evening, the top ten athletes, plus five additional rodeo members whose year-long average score qualified them, competed in the final rodeo.
The scores received in each event qualified the leading four contestants to represent Utah as part of the national team at the National High School Finals Rodeo held in Gillette, Wyo. in the middle of July.
Places 5 through 15 also qualified to compete in Winnemucca, Nev. on June 23 -27 at the Silver State Rodeo. The Carbon rodeo team as well as the Emery team will be represented on both state teams.
Those practicing hard for nationals from Carbon include Morgan Jensen in barrels, Kolton Rhodes in rifle shoot and Jordon Pierce in the trap shoot competition. Emery team members also headed for Gillette are Austin Allred, bulls; McKoy Christiansen, saddle bronc; Hayden Cloward, team roping; and Louie Ivie, tie down roping.
The Silver State rodeo will welcome Dino Kortney Backus, who will compete for queen; Jordon Pierce, rifle shoot; Morgan Jensen, poles; and Sadie Waller, reining cow horse. Spartans making the trip to Nevada will be McKoy and Riata Christiansen, reining cow horse; Nathan Urie, saddle broncs; Louie Ivie, Ty Gordon and Taylor Wilstead, as well as Will and Wyatt Magnuson, team roping.