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The judging team of Coach Zac Hall, Kaitlyn Peterson, Bradyn Lachenmeier, Ethan Galbreath, Madeliene Nichols and Chayla Kuss represented North Dakota at the Western National Roundup.

ND 4-H livestock judging team places fourth at Western National Roundup

The 4-H Livestock Judging team representing North Dakota recently competed at the Western National Roundup, placing fourth out of 26 teams.

Last March, the Kidder County 4-H Livestock Judging Team finished second at the North Dakota State Livestock Judging contest, qualifying them for the chance to judge in Denver. However, two of the team members on that team had already competed in Denver in 2017, therefore making them ineligible for the 2019 contest. A team was assembled from neighboring counties to represent North Dakota in Denver from 4-H youth that received high scores in the qualifying state contest. Kaitlyn Peterson of Bismarck, Chayla Kuss from Woodworth and Madeliene Nichols of Sykeston were invited to join Kidder County members Bradyn Lachenmeier of Tappen and Ethan Galbreath of Steele to form team North Dakota at Denver.

Team North Dakota departed from Steele on Jan. 8 and first stopped at Koester Red Angus to evaluate their sale bulls. The team arrived in Fort Collins, Colo., Wednesday night to prepare for the busy week of practice before the big event. Workouts included Flatlands Showpigs of Merino, Colo., and Magnum Feedyard, Wiggins, Colo., where the team prepared for the Feedlot Cattle class which is a staple in the Western National contest. Jan. 10 the team spent the morning at the Colorado State University Equine Complex judging practice classes to help prepare for the contest. That afternoon and evening the team practiced reasons.

The morning of the contest the team judged classes before riding a bus back to the hotel for reasons. Kaitlyn Peterson had the opportunity to make new friends in the elevator after it had been stalled roughly one hour as it carried 11 contestants back to the reasons rooms. After the contest she had a great attitude about the misfortune and laughed about the elevator mishap.

When the awards portion was complete, “Team North Dakota” had made their presence known.  Bradyn Lachenmeier finished the contest as Reserve High Individual out of a field of 100 competitors and Peterson finished 11th. The team finished in a very close fourth place, eight points behind the High Team, Texas, followed by Kansas and Pennsylvania.

Team and individual placings were:

* Team - Sheep, High Team; Swine, fifth; Cattle, seventh; Reasons, seventh; Goats, 14th  

* Peterson - Sheep, High Individual; Overall, 11th; Cattle, 14th

* Lachenmeier - Overall, second; Cattle, fifth; Sheep, sixth; Goats, 16th

* Kuss - Swine, 11th; Sheep, 17th

The team thanks all who contributed to funding livestock judging teams in North Dakota.