Nov. 6 2017 07:00 AM

NAILE dairy judging contest winners announced in Kentucky.

Teams from Minnesota and Wisconsin were jockeying for the top positions in the youth division (4-H and FFA combined) and collegiate dairy judging contest as each breed’s winners were announced at the North American International Livestock Exposition’s Dairy Judging Contest (NAILE) banquet. At the end of the day, it was the Minnesota teams that pulled ahead to top their respective contests.

Youth Division

Winning Youth Division Team: Minnesota 4-H
Coach Mazie Scheffler, Jacob Hornberg, Sierra Swanson, Emily Benrud, and Mikayla Erf, and coach Tony Scheffler

The Minnesota 4-H team bested Wisconsin 4-H by 21 points at the same time topping 21 other youth teams (three were FFA chapters). The Minnesota team consisted of Mikayla Erf, 2nd Individual; Emily Benrud, 3rd Individual; and Sierra Swanson, 6th Individual and Jacob Hornberg.This team was coached by Mazie and Tony Scheffler.

The second place team from Wisconsin was led by the high individual in the contest, Elise Bleck. Her teammates were Vanessa Roberts who placed fifth, Eva Doornink who was eighth, and Colin Uecker who finished 18th. The third place team was Michigan 4-H followed by Massachusetts 4-H and New York 4-H.

In the youth reasons division, Bleck also took top honors. She had a five-point advantage over teammate Vanessa Roberts. (Five points was also her level of victory in the overall competition.) Minnesota 4-H’s Emily Benrud and Mikayla Erf were fourth and fifth in reasons. Miriam Cook of Michigan 4-H was fifth.

University Division

Winning University Team: University of Minnesota:
Haely Leiding, Trent Dado, Krista Styer, Brooke Robert, and Les Hansen, coach
A five-point advantage seemed to be the reoccurring theme, as the University of Minnesota surpassed the University of Wisconsin–River Falls by that sum. Team members included Brooke Roberts (2nd), Haely Leiding (6th), Krista Styer (16th), and Trent Dado. They were coached by Les Hansen.

University of Wisconsin-River Falls secured the second place finish over Oklahoma State University by 17 points. UWRF had an impressive day with three in the top 11 individuals. That list included Clint Irrthum (5th); Kaila Wussow (8th); and Erica Helmer (11th). Matt Kramer rounded out their team that was coached by Steve Kelm.

The University of Wisconsin–Madison and Iowa State completed the top five in a field of 13 teams.

High Individual was David Pintens from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He had a sizeable margin of victory — 14 points. Brooke Roberts of the University of Minnesota, Mason Lettinga of Iowa State, Ella Jackson of The Ohio State, and Clint Irrthum of the University of Wisconsin–River Falls completed the top five individuals.

In the collegiate reasons portion, Mason Lettinga of Iowa State led the way. Pintens was second, Ethan Haywood of Michigan State was third, Kaila Wussow claimed fourth, and Erica Helmer rounded out the top five best talkers of the collegiate contest.

The top reasons team was University of Wisconsin–River Falls, followed by the University of Minnesota.

Two-year colleges

Winning 2-Year College Team: Kaskaskia College:
Morgan Olbrich, Avery Kotlarczyk, Kaleb Kruse, Hadley Ehlers, and coach Aaron Heinzmann

Illinois’ Kaskaskia College held a 12-point advantage over Michigan State Ag Tech to take the two-year college title. California’s Modesto Junior College, New York’s Morrisville, and Iowa’s Northeast Iowa Community College rounded out the top five teams.

Kaskaskia’s team consisted of Kaleb Kruse (2nd Individual), Avery Kotlarczyk (6th Individual), Hadley Ehlers (7th Individual), and Morgan Olbrich. They were coached by Aaron Heinzmann.

Michigan State Ag Tech had the high individual, Cameron Cook, and she won by 14 points. Modesto Junior College had the third and fourth place individuals, Adrianna Toste and Donavan Miguel. Fifth was won by Hayley Jackson of Northeast Iowa Community College.

In the reasons portion, Kaskaskia’s Avery Kotlarczyk took the trophy. She was followed by Michigan State Ag Tech’s Cameron Cook, Modesto Junior College’s Adriana Toste, Michigan State Ag Tech’s Hope McAlvery, and Kaskaskia’s Kaleb Kruse.

As per tradition, George Heersche, University of Kentucky, entertained breakfast banquet attendees, as he announced the awards ceremony.

High Individuals: Elise Bleck (Wisconsin 4-H), Cameron Cook (Michigan State Ag Tech), and David Pintens (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Patti Hurtgen

The author is the online media manager and is responsible for the website, webinars, and social media. A graduate of Modesto Junior College and Fresno State, she was raised on a California dairy and frequently blogs on youth programs and consumer issues.