Officials from the NEO Agriculture Department and rodeo team awarded four scholarships totaling over $4,500 at the Sixth Annual NEO Alumni/Recruiting Rodeo. The rodeo took place on Nov. 21, 2015 and hosted over 350 contestants, the largest number of entries in the rodeo’s history. The day began with long rounds in eight events and the top six competitors in the high school and alumni divisions made the short round, which started at 7 p.m. Riders competed in saddle bronc, bareback bronc, calf roping, breakaway roping, steer wrestling, goat tying, team roping, barrel racing, and bull riding. Alumnus and MSU Pathways student Kory Keeth served as the announcer for the rodeo and energized the crowd.
Students also ran sound, prepared the arena, and operated gates. “NEO is a wonderful school and the professors at this school taught us all some very valuable life lessons,” said Coleman Proctor, NEO alumnus, team roping winner, and two-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier. “Roger Fent would always tell me that you want to be like the hog rather than the chicken. Because the chicken only contributed the one part of breakfast, but the hog gave it everything he had.”
Timber Allenbrand from Paola, Kans. was the high school high point winner, and NEO Rodeo Coach Kolby Ungeheuer awarded her a two-year full tuition scholarship. The NEO Development Foundation also provided three $500 book scholarships to Justin Payne of Fairland, Okla., Laramie Warren of Adair, Okla., and Connor Gentry of Pleasanton, Kans. “I’m very grateful that our administration sees the value in the agriculture program and this rodeo, because these scholarships make a difference in the kids’ lives,” said Ungeheuer.
Results: High Point Scholarship Winner – Timber Allenbrand, Paola, Kans. Reserve High Point Book Scholarship Winners – Justin Payne, Fairland, Okla.; Laramie Warren – Adair, Okla.; Connor Gentry, Pleasanton, Kans. Saddle Bronc – High School: Tyler Smith, Huntsville, Ark. Alumni: Timmy Mathews, Joplin, Mo. Bareback Bronc – High School: Cameron Langston, Woodward, Okla. Alumni: Maverick Griffin, Lee’s Summit, Mo. Calf Roping – High School: Josh Pool, Purdy, Okla. Alumni: Jared Kempker, Eugene, Mo. Breakaway Roping – High School: Winter Williams, Copan, Okla. Alumni: Kirbee Spire, Maryville, Mo. Steer Wrestling – High School: Laramie Warren, Adair, Okla. Alumni: Joe Bell Jr., Fairland, Okla. Goat Tying – High School: Cierra Bennett, Wyandotte, Okla. Alumni: Dana Spitzke, Vinita, Okla. Team Roping – High School: Sam Cravens, Pryor, Okla. and Cody Heflin, Pryor, Okla. Alumni: Coleman Proctor, Pryor, Okla. and Tyler Worley, Stephenville, Texas. Barrel Racing – High School: Callie Keaton, Anderson, Mo. Alumni: Bailee Snow, Stephenville, Texas. Bull Riding – High School: Cody Wilson, Elkins, Ark. Alumni: Logan Robrahn, Siloam Springs, Ark.
(Photo: Zane Volkmann, Alumni, Pathways Student, and Graduate Assistant; Kirbee Spire, Alumni, Pathways Student, and Graduate Assistant; Timber Allenbrand, High Point Scholarship winner; Kolby Ungeheuer, rodeo coach)