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Ranch Rodeo wrangles in crowd

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RONAN – Hallie Sohr makes it a point to come to the annual Ronan Ranch Rodeo and participate. She is a Montana State University student and rodeo breakaway and team roper. “I enjoy roping, and I like being involved in this kind of stuff,” she said. 

On Saturday, a couple hundred spectators gathered in the stands of the Ronan Fairgrounds arena to watch five local teams, each composed of four people, compete in a slate of events that simulate everyday ranch-style tasks. The events were held in conjunction with the Lake County Fair.

“This is something I love doing,” said competitor Steve Love. “I find that it’s a good stress relief.”

Featured events during this year’s ranch rodeo were calf branding, steer mugging, wild-cow milking and a combo event. In the branding event, a calf was roped at the head and hind legs then touched with a cold branding iron in a manner that simulates real life branding.

The object of steer mugging is to get the steer to the ground and tied as fast as possible, which is done when a rider on horseback ropes the steer while the other three team members try to wrestle the animal to the ground. In the combo event, the teams had seven minutes to doctor a steer, load two calves into a trailer from a mixed heard and rope two steers.

The team of Menno Swartzentruber, Todd Hoover, Paul Guenzler and Scott McAllister finished in first place with an overall combined time total of five minutes and 36 seconds.

The team of RJ Snyder, Josh Nunn, Kelly McAllister and Koy McAllister placed second with a time of six minutes and 58 seconds. 

The third-place team included Zeb Lytle, Ryle Lytle, Paul Guenzler and Will Harris with a time of seven minutes and 11 seconds.

The team of Terry Frisk, Hallie Sohr, Steve Love and Niel Clark finished with a time of eight minutes and 22 seconds for fourth place, while the team of Trevor Motichka, Josh Senecal, Herb Harris and Scott McAllister placed fifth.

Adding to the ranch rodeo fun, spectators were able to win money by participating in a Calcutta by purchasing a ranch-rodeo team in an auction before the wild cow-milking event. The team of Swartzentruber, Hoover, Guenzler and McAllister who won the combo event also won this year’s wild-cow milking event.


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