Fort Hays State University's livestock judging Tigers recently completed one of the most successful spring semesters in the school's judging history.
The Tigers traveled to Kewanee, IL, for the North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture judging conference to complete the semester. This event featured numerous judging contests and had more than 400 junior and senior college contestants.
The livestock contest was much smaller than a lot of the other contests because it was strictly for non-land grant schools. Among the five universities that competed, FHSU finished second behind Western Illinois, a team that had a record day. FHSU finished more than 300 points ahead of the third-place team, Northwest Missouri State.
Every team member finished in the top 10 overall. Matt Wolfe, Indianola, NE, senior, led the team with a third-place overall finish, Ashley Stull, Natoma senior, recorded her best score yet and finished in sixth. Kelsey Kennedy, Myrtle Point, OR, junior, was seventh, Evan Cooper, Burdett senior, was eighth and Kiley McKinna, Redvers, Saskatchewan, was ninth.
"Our livestock judging team also participated in the university quiz bowl at NACTA," said Kolby Burch, livestock judging coach. "They proved that they are a sharp group by finishing second in the quiz bowl."
In one of the team's run-ups to the NACTA contest, the team also went to Oakley to serve as officials and assist with Oakley's FFA livestock judging contest.
"It was a great opportunity for us to promote our program, provide some expertise, and visit with area high school students and agriculture instructors," said Burch. "As a bonus, the FHSU students were able to enhance their evaluation skills and improve their presentation ability."