Since 1949 the National High School Finals Rodeo has provided high school students from across the country the opportunity to showcase their remarkable rodeo talents. Over the years, the event has featured over 1,500 students from across the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
Natrona County School District students joined hundreds of high school students in Lincoln, Nebraska, this summer to experience western heritage, camaraderie with fellow student-athletes, and of course, competition.
Natrona County High School seniors Mason Trollinger and Teagan Bentley placed 3rd in the nation for Team Roping Average. “Taking 3rd place felt really good. I did it on a horse I raised and trained,” shared Bentley. “However, I am planning on coming back next year and bringing home a national championship!”
Throughout the event, activities such as a large volleyball tournament with teams from every state, a “Cowboy Prom,” and many other experiences provide participants the opportunity to learn about, engage with, and make lasting friendships with students from around the world. Kavin Hoff, Natrona County High School freshman, shared, “Participating in Nationals is so much fun! Rodeo is a great sport because you meet lots of good people from all over the country, and it really is a great community.”
This was Hoff’s rookie year in the NHSFR, and he had the opportunity to participate in Saddle Bronc Riding and Chute Dogging. “I grew up watching rodeo, and it looked so fun. It looked like a challenge which I really enjoy. So I thought, ‘Why not try to get on a bronc that is trying to throw you off?’ That is definitely a challenge.”
Traveling to competitions across the country in preparation for the “World’s Largest Rodeo”, student participants work to excel in the sport they love throughout the year. “I have always been around the western lifestyle,” explained Bentley. “I have loved it ever since I was little. We had a great family friend, Jhett Johnson, who did professional rodeo, and I wanted to win the world like him.”
The National High School Rodeo Association provides student participants with the opportunity to express their Western heritage through determination, grit, and positive sportsmanship in and out of the arena.
Congratulations to all student participants!
To see a complete list of this year’s National High School Finals Rodeo results, visit https://nhsra.com/2021-nhsfr-results/.