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March 19, 2012

Blinn takes top prize at Houston Livestock Show

Three students earn All-America honors

Blinn College Livestock Judging Team
Blinn College’s livestock judging team won the two-year colleges’ livestock judging competition at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. Front row (L to R): Justin James, Hunter Brietzke, Holly Behrens, Taylor Haliburton, Keaton Dodd, Zacharey Davis. Back row (L-R) Coach Brant Poe, Assistant Coach Joe Rathmann, Josh Henning, Stephen Karisch, Lane Halfmann, Sterling Yurrita, Agriculture Division Chair Doug Pierce, Coach Brandon Callis.

While most college students were enjoying a week off for spring break, the Blinn College livestock judging team was bringing home a championship title at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.

Blinn bested 21 other colleges to win the overall livestock judging competition in one of only six national contests endorsed by the National Junior College Coaches Association.

“I have never been more proud of such a talented group of people for pushing themselves to accomplish their personal best,” said Coach Brant Poe. “Their never-give-up attitude was key to accomplishing this victory.”

Blinn scored 4,746 points to defeat second-place Connors State College and third-place Butler College. Blinn won first-place honors in swine, sheep, goats and oral reasons while coming in second in placings and third in cattle.

Of the 15 students to earn All-America honors at the competition, three were from Blinn – Keaton Dodd (Blanco), Lane Halfmann (Garden City) and Justin James (Prosper).

Halfmann placed fourth overall by winning the goat-judging competition and placing second in reasons, seventh in cattle and eighth in sheep. Dodd was sixth overall after placing second in swine, third in goats and fifth in reasons and sheep. James placed eighth overall, highlighted by a third-place finish in swine.

Hunter Brietzke (Marion) was 12th overall after placing third in sheep, fifth in goats and eighth in reasons; Zacharey Davis (Willis) was 15th overall after placing sixth in goats and seventh in swine and Taylor Haliburton (Waco) was 31st overall, including a ninth-place finish in goats. Holly Behrens (Port Lavaca), Josh Henning (Goliad), Sterling Yurrita (Bandera) and Stephen Karisch (La Grange) also represented Blinn at the competition.

Blinn is coached by instructors Poe and Brandon Callis and assistants Joe Rathmann and Scott Shelby.