4-H’ers earn state champion titles


LARAMIE – Niobrara County 4-H Meat Judging Teams brought home several championship titles from the State 4-H Meat Judging Contest held April 9 in Laramie at the University of Wyoming.

The junior team composed of Sarah Jo Goddard, Emily ZumBrunnen, Addy Sidwell and Wyatt Struach brought home the State Champion Team Banner donated by the Marian Henderson Memorial. This group had a total score of 1, 782 points to outdistance the Natrona County team by four points. Natrona had 1,778 for second place, Albany was third with 1,773 and Natrona’s second team was fourth with 1, 620. 

Individually, Sarah Jo topped all juniors in the contest with a total score of 612 points. She received a plaque donated by the Marian Henderson Memorial for this prestigious honor. Sarah Jo was also the high individual in junior retail identification and received a plaque from the Mandi Micheli Memorial. In addition, she was second overall in placings and took third place in questions and oral reasons.

Emily ZumBrunnen was the third high individual overall in the juniors with a final tally of 577. Emily was also honored for placing second in retail ID and fifth in placings and questions.

Addy Sidwell was Niobrara’s highest placing individual in the intermediate division (ages 11-13) with 593 points placing her fourth overall in this division. Addy was recognized for placing fourth in retail ID, sixth in questions and reasons and tenth in placings.

Wyatt Strauch rounded out the junior team placing ninth overall in the intermediate division with a score of 536. He was also third in retail cut ID.

The Senior Meat Judging Team composed of Kort Bannan, Melody ZumBrunnen, Aiden Applegarth and Gracie ZumBrunnn brought home the State Reserve Championship title. They received a team banner and individual trophies from the Marian Henderson Memorial. They were also awarded a trip to the National Meat Judging Contest in Kansas City which will take place this coming October. The champion team was ineligible for this trip, so Niobrara gets the honor of representing Wyoming at this national event.

Natrona County won the contest with 2,244 points and will be traveling to the Denver Western Contest in January. The local Niobrara team was second with 2,210, just one point ahead of the third place Albany team and Fremont took fourth with 2,101 points.

Kort Bannan paced the Niobrara team with 755 points to place him third overall in the senior division. He received a plaque from the State 4-H Foundation for this honor. Kort was also recognized for placing third in retail ID, second in placings and ninth in reasons.

Melody ZumBrunnen gathered 733 total points to place ninth overall in the contest. She was also seventh in retail ID and tenth in placings.

Aiden Applegarth just missed the top ten individuals, placing eleventh with 722. He was ninth overall in retail ID.

Gracie ZumBrunnen rounded out the senior team with a final score of 691. Gracie was also twelfth in retail ID.

The group was chaperoned by volunteer leaders Carrie Bannan, Amy Applegarth and Tammie Jensen. The teams were also coached by Jensen.                                                                                                       

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