At the 32nd annual Silver State International Rodeo in Winnemucca, Nev., 12 different states and Canada sent roughly 500 high school and junior high rodeo athletes for six days of competition on the big stage.
The Columbia Basin Rodeo Club fielded a trio of competitors, consisting of Morgan Brumley, of Dufur, Morgan Jane Coyne, of Centerville, and Bryce Harrison, of Condon.
In addition, the club also had two junior high members competing for top prizes, with Madison Malcolm of Dufur, and Kallyn Wilkins of Condon, each qualifying for Silver State through their respective events.
Competitors and their horses, who qualified by finishing from fifth to 15th in their respective state rodeo finals, spent the week battling it out in two rounds of SSIR action, with the top 15 in the average standings in each event moving on to Saturday’s short-go round to determine the final standings.
Coyne finished out her trip with a 10-point average, setting her high marks in goat tying with a ninth-place outcome.
With her totals, Coyne advanced to the short-go rounds and placed third in her field.
Harrison had a 10-point average, which placed him eighth in steer wrestling to move into Saturday’s finals, but ran into trouble, as his steer didn’t cooperate.
Rounding out the high school participants, Brumley scored 20th place in the barrel racing standings.
“The opportunity to go to SSIR was incredible,” Brumley said. “I'm so thankful for that opportunity and for my supportive family and friends. All the members in my rodeo club did great and I couldn't be more proud.”
Malcolm ended her rodeo run with a 20-point average, placing 12th in pole bending and sixth in goat tying, while Wilkins finished 19th in barrel racing.
Throughout the entire competition, the State of Oregon placed fourth in the team state standings with 342.5 points, following Utah, Nevada, and California.
In all, the Oregon High School Rodeo program is made up of 156 students that compete from September to May with the state finals in June.
All told, there are 11 events to participate in; team roping, bull riding, saddle bronc, bareback, tie down roping, steer wrestling, barrel racing, pole bending, goat tying, breakaway roping and cutting.
The top 4 finishers in each event qualify for the National High School Rodeo held in Gillette, Wyo., and those placing from fifth-through 15th in their respective state finals earned a trip to Winnemucca.
The SSIR checks have yet to be distributed, but more than $65,000 in prizes and scholarship money is earmarked for each of the event’s top competitors.
Along with buckles and saddles, CBRC competitors also came back with SSIR hat pins, vendor souvenirs and a little mud from the mud volleyball pit, which the state of Oregon won, along with traces of Winnemucca water and arena dirt still on them from all the water fights and rodeo performances.
The CBRC starts its 2017-2018 campaign with the first OHSRA rodeo of the year on Sept 3-4 at the Gilliam County Fairgrounds in Condon.
Harrison, Malcolm, Brumley, Wilkins and Coyne expressed their gratitude and offered thanks to several businesses and local community members for their unwavering support of the program.