Local Students Off to NHSFR

Thursday, June 12, 2014
The local team roping duo of Ty Haney of Rector (left) and Ethan Murray of Piggott in action at last week's Kentucky High School Rodeo championships. With a third place finish the team ropers have qualified for the national competition to be held in July

Local students Ethan Murray and Ty Haney made a good showing at the Kentucky State National High School Rodeo this past weekend, taking third in the team roping competition and punching their ticket to the National High School Finals Rodeo in July.

Murray is a student a Piggott High School, and Haney a student at Rector High, where they'll both be juniors in the fall. The talented young men entered the competition as the top-ranked team in the state of Kentucky but stumbled a bit and finished third. But, the top four automatically advance to the pinnacle of their sport, and with the finish the local duo earned a spot in the 66th annual National High School Finals Rodeo, set for July 13 to 19 in Rock Springs, Wyo.

The NHSFR features more than 1,500 contestants from 42 states, five Canadian provinces and Australia and is the world's largest rodeo. In addition to competing for more than $200,000 in prizes, contestants will also be competing for more than $350,000 in college scholarships and the chance to be named an NHSFR National Champion. To earn this title, contestants must finish in the top 20--based on their combined times/scores in the first two rounds--to advance to the final round on Saturday evening. National champions will then be determined based on their three-round combined times/scores.

Ty Haney (left) and Ethan Murray show-off the buckles they earned for their third place finish in the Kentucky State High School Rodeo Championships.

Again, this year the Saturday championship performance will be televised nationally as part of the "Cinch High School Rodeo Tour" telecast series on RFD-TV. Live broadcasts of each NHSFR performance will also air online at NHSRATV.com The Performance times are 7 p.m. on July 13 and 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. each day after.

Along with the great rodeo competition, the local competitors will have the chance to meet new friends from around the world. The contestants will also have the chance to enjoy shooting sports, volleyball, dances, family-oriented activities, church services sponsored by the Fellowship of Christian Cowboys and shopping at the NHSFR trade show.

"We had a great time this year at the Kentucky High School Rodeo and made the top four in the state by getting third overall," Murray said of the experience. "We made some great friends this year and can't wait to do it all over again."

But, the young ropers are quick to point out they would not have been able to compete were it not for the support of their sponsors. They offered their thanks to Biter Transportation, Galyean Trucking, Piggott State Bank, Thousand Hills Cowboy Church, H and B Cattle Company and Smart Ropes for helping make the effort possible.

Local supporters of the young horsemen also plan to hold an event to help mark their accomplishment, and allow those interested to donate toward the July trip to Wyoming. The date and location will be announced soon.

Those wanting more information on the NHSFR may visit NHSRA.org for updates and results. Individuals wanting ticket information on the finals may call 307 352-6789.

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