Fresno State Livestock Team places ninth at national finale
(November 17, 2015) -– The Fresno State Livestock Team completed its fall season with an impressive ninth-place finish at the North American International Livestock Exposition on November 17 in Louisville, Kentucky.
The seven-person also claimed four top-11 finishes in four other competitions against the 33-team field in the categories for performance cattle (fifth), hogs (eighth), reasons (10th) and cattle (11). Senior Danielle Budde was Fresno State’s top individual placer in the overall standings (16th) and also finished fourth in the sheep category.
“We were relatively inexperienced coming into the season,” said team coach Brad Mendes, “but our students worked hard together and achieved their goal of being top 10 at nationals. They pushed each other all year long and were able to improve on an equally noteworthy 11th-place finish last fall against the nation’s best teams.”
Earlier in the fall, the team competed in four events in October, and highlights from each follow.
The team opened its season at the Western Fall Classic in Medford, Oregon and placed second overall. Sophomore Amy Dierberger claimed high individual honors, and five other team members also placed top 10 overall – sophomore Tino Rossi (third), seniors Cody McDougald (sixth) and Shannon Sumpter (seventh), Budde (ninth) and junior Hannah Price (10th).
After a sixth-place team finish at the Texas State Fair in Dallas, the squad placed second overall at the Big Fresno Fair and was led by senior John Traini (first), Sumpter (third) and Budde (fourth).
At the American Royal event in Kansas City, the team placed seventh overall after it finished top 10 in categories for sheep (third), goats (third), cattle (seventh), hogs (ninth) and reasons (ninth). Price placed fifth among individuals in the sheep and goat categories, and John finished 14th overall and three points shy of a top-10 finish.
Other members of the team that competed in fall included seniors Teighler Baugher, Jonathan Rodriguez and Paige Wysong.
Looking ahead, the squad will travel to four major events across the nation in the spring – the Arizona National Livestock Show in Phoenix in December, National Western Stock Show in Denver in January, San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo in February and Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo in March.
The spring roster includes Leah Grove, Kaitlyn Heale, Halee Cole, Arriana Koster, Cameron Rocha, Amy Dierberger and Toushalong Vang.
More information on the Fresno State Livestock Judging Team is available at its Facebook page .