Madras wins equestrian district title
In horse racing terms, it was a dead heat going into the final meet.
Madras and The Dalles-Wahtonka equestrian teams both scored 704 points by trading first-place finishes after the opening two Central Oregon District meets of the Oregon High School Equestrian Team competition.
That left last weekend's final district meet to decide a winner in the medium team division. Competitors from both teams had numerous individual and team events to decide a district champion at the Deschutes County Expo Center.
Madras won by six points, 301-295, highlighted by a first place and district gold medal in the team penning competition. The Madras trio of Kayleen Urbach, Adrianne Wagner and Rachel Fox had the best overall finishes in the three meets.
In team penning, the three riders attempt to separate up to three cattle from a herd and then direct them into a pen. Urbach, Wagner and Fox finished fourth at district meets on Feb. 23-24 and March 27-29 to set up their gold medal win.
The gold medal means the local trio will be competing in the OHSET state meet on May 15-18, also in Redmond.
Atcitty Begay earned a gold medal in breakaway roping and a bronze in steer daubing. Begay clinched the gold by finishing third in the final district meet. He was third in the first meet and fifth in the second.
In steer daubing, Begay finished third in the final district meet. Begay is also a state alternate in keyhole, finishing 11th in last weekend's district.
Urbach and Wagner qualified in other events as well.
Urbach earned the silver medal in poles and bronze in individual flags. Urbach clinched her silver in poles by finishing third at the final district meet, clocking 22.88 seconds. The Madras senior was also 14th in flags during the district finale at 15.1.
Urbach is also a state qualifier in barrels by finishing in the top 10. She clinched a state spot by finishing fifth in the the district finale, clocking 15.19.
Wagner is a state qualifier in barrels, poles and figure eight. She finished in the top four of two event at the final district meet to earn her state berths. Wagner was second in figure eight in 11.070 and fourth in barrels at 15.040. Wagner also finished 24th in poles, clocking 28.180.
Jessica Ramey is the top state alternate in barrels. Ramey finished 13th at the final district meet with a 15.94 time.
Madras had competitors in 13 individual and four team events. Every competitor completing an event earns at least one team point. Those finishing in the top 15 earn additional points, ranging from 20 for a first place down to a 15th place worth two points.