Washington County Fair Rodeo

Karlene Kinney of Blair rides her horse around barrels Saturday during the first performances of the Washington County Fair Rodeo in Arlington.

A Thursday in Guthrie, Okla., and a Saturday night at the Washington County Fair.

Fort Calhoun cowboy Cameron Shaner had quite a week, competing at the National High School Finals Rodeo inside the rodeo-famous Lazy E Arena before coming home to team rope with his father, Jeff, at the fairgrounds.

“I've been chasing that for five years, and then I got to go do it,” the recent high school grad said of nationals. “It was a bonus that it was inside. It was really neat. I've been wanting to rope there for a long time.”

Cameron's county fair roping partner, his father, was complimentary of the experience in Oklahoma as well.

“The competition was phenomenal,” he said.

Washington County Fair Rodeo

Clay Clayman of Highlandville, Mo., competes in the steer wrestling Sunday at the Washington County Fairgrounds.

The Shaners wrapped-up their stay at the high school finals Thursday, making it back home for the county's annual Mid-States Rodeo Association event.

“It wasn't too big of stress,” Cameron said.

The Shaners' horses got in some exercise Saturday morning and were ready for their run at the fair rodeo later than night. A barrier was broken for penalty time during the first performance, but the father-son team still logged a time of 21.2 seconds.

The Fort Calhoun pair were far from the only Washington County representation in Arlington with several notching noteworthy times both Saturday and Sunday nights.

Laney Hoier of Herman did her part in the barrel racing Saturday, clocking in at 16.60 seconds.

Taylor Reazin of Peculiar, Mo., then won the overall event Sunday with a 16-second ride, besting a field filled with local racers. Cassidy Arp, Lauren Schwedhelm, Annika Gaylord, Shelby Kaup, Makenna Dirkschneider, Brooklyn Cziria, Hailey O'Daniel, Stacy O'Daniel and Karlene Kinney were all on the day sheets going into the rodeo.

“It's cool because a lot of people come here that I know and they're like, 'Oh, you barrel race. I didn't know that,'” Kinney said. “And then a lot of people cheer me on.”

The Blair cowgirl hasn't had the opportunity to make many runs with her horse this year, though, which contributed to the 18.74-second ride she wasn't a fan of.

“I don't think he was 100 percent sure what he was doing, you know?” Kinney said before accepting some of the blame with a laugh. “I should have been riding more!”

Team roping was another big event for Washington County representation. A majority of the hometown folks made their attempts Saturday alongside the Shaners. Chris Sleicschman teamed with Wyatt Moore, Matt O'Daniel with Kent Martin of Elkhorn, Jay Scheuth with Cody Sharpe of Bennington, Dylan Schmidt with Rick Schmidt and Mitch Barney with Jace Engesser of Spearfish, S.D. In addition, Jason and Cassidy Arp and Harry and Bradie Crouse competed in mixed-team roping.

Barney logged the county's best time with Engesser — 11.2 seconds — but the teams of Jeff Johnston and Jett Hillman, as well as Rob Hollard and Troy Hermelbracht, earned first in 5.2 seconds, unofficially. Tracy Paulsen and Heath Barlow won the mixed-team roping in 9.1.

Additional event winners were Reed Kraeger of Avoca in the steer wrestling and Hannah Hughes in the breakaway roping. Sam Wigans of Goldfield, Iowa, won the bareback riding with a 73-point score, besting Zach Parr of Allen (72) and Nick Schwedhelm of Fort Calhoun (67).

The only qualified ride in the bull riding was earned by Ethan Lesiak.

Like Shaner, Washington County Fair saddle bronc champ Brody McAbee of Ansley had a busy week.

“Experience, I guess,” he said when asked what got him through his 77-point 8-second ride. “I've been getting on a lot.”

Just last week, the bronc rider had been to rodeos in Thedford, Gordon and Winter, S.D. On Saturday, though, he was in Arlington for the Washington County Fair.

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