Kimball native Jandreau takes 22nd at NHSFRJill Jandreau admitted her first trip to the National High School Finals Rodeo was a little nerve-racking. The Kimball native was able to shake her early jitters, and by the end of her experience she felt she belonged there.
By: Justin Rust, The Daily Republic
Jill Jandreau admitted her first trip to the National High School Finals Rodeo was a little nerve-racking.
The Kimball native was able to shake her early jitters, and by the end of her experience she felt she belonged there.
Jandreau finished 22nd in the breakaway roping competition at the NHSFR, which was held July 17 through Saturday in Gillette, Wyo. Her two go-rounds combined to give her an average score of 7.18, which fell just short of placing in the top 20. The person in 20th place posted an average score of 6.9 points. The top 20 participants in an event qualify for the final round — the short-go.
“I was just a little out of it,” Jandreau said. “It was really close, but it was encouraging that it was that close.
“My goal was to make it into the short-go, but it’s tough at nationals, so I was happy with where I finished.”
Jandreau may have competed in many rodeos before the NHSFR, but she said nationals are a completely different experience.
“It had a bigger atmosphere, and for some of the people rodeo is their life, so it was way different,” she said. “There was more excitement, and you got to meet different people who are all in it to win it.”
Jandreau was able to deal with her nerves before she even competed.
“I got there on (July 17) and I wasn’t up until (July 19), so I had some time to adapt to watch everyone else go,” she said. “It helped a lot, so I got the handle on everything. It was a lot easier.”
Jandreau went into the NHSFR with the expectations of making the short-go, but she said where she finished is probably better for her.
“It builds a huge fire in me,” she said. “It’s probably better for me not making the short-go because it gives me that extra boost for next year.”
Jandreau has one more year of eligibility left.
Avon’s Joe Bertus was able to improve on his finish from his first trip to the NHSFR in 2010, but he still finished 29 places lower than he wanted to.
Bertus scored 73 points in bull riding and finished in 30th place.
“My expectations were to ride three bulls and win,” Bertus said. “I was not going there to lose. Not making it the top 20 was pretty disappointing, but I guess top 30 isn’t horrible. I wish I would’ve done better.”
Bertus could not remember what place he finished in 2010, but he said it was way lower than where he finished this year.
Bertus finished three points shy of making the short-go. He scored his 73 points on his first bull, and he was bucked from the second bull. But it was his first ride where he felt he could have made up the three points necessary to qualify for the short-go.
“I kind of made a mistake and got on the side of the bull at the 7 second mark,” he said. “If I would’ve been square on him, it would’ve added the three points I needed.
“I’ve been kind of regretting doing that, but you have to forget about that and move on. There are always more bulls to get on.”
The second bull Bertus rode bucked him off at about the six second mark, but he said there was nothing he could really do to fix that ride.
“The bull kind of threw a dirty move at me and threw me off,” he said. “I don’t know what I could’ve done differently.”
Bertus has one more year left to compete at the high school level, and he will have the same goal next year that he had this year — to win the bull riding competition.
“The goal does not change,” he said.
Last year, Schae Hanson, of Burke, was able to make the short-go of the girls’ cutting competition and finished in 16th place. This year, a couple of mistakes led to her finishing outside of the top 20 in the same event. Hanson scored 409 points and finished in 33rd place.
“My horse had a great run, but I had a few errors myself that cost me some points,” she said. “If my errors wouldn’t have been as bad as they were, I would’ve made the short-go.
“My horse has never had a bad run, I just usually do something to make the score not as good. If I can learn from my mistakes, we will have a clean run.”
Even though she is disappointed with where she finished this year, Hanson still has two years left to compete at the high school level.
“I’ve been through a lot and learned a lot these last two years,” she said. “So hopefully these next two years, I can be better in all of my events and put up some great scores.”
Cassidy Musick, who will be a sophomore at Wessington Springs High School, finished in 48th place in barrel racing with an average score of 36.134 seconds. Iona’s Charli Kenzy finished in 85th place in girls’ cutting with 386 points, and Chesney Nagel, of Springfield, finished in 129th place with an average score of 11.06 seconds in goat tying.
Kennebec’s Syerra Christensen, breakaway roping, and Winner’s Lane Hall, saddle bronc, were both unable to record a time or any points in their events.