St. Helens High School’s Oregon High School Equestraim Team (OHSET) is sporting several wins from the state competition.
As partners, Katie Holm and Tiffany Thompson were named state champions in the team birangle competiton. Holm also took the state championship title for barrel racing, as well as a reserve champion title in pole bending. Thompson took reserve champion in the keyhole competition.
According to Holm’s mother, Melissa, the OHSET drill team also made it to state, placing 6th out of 22 teams. However, one team dropped out, so they will now be competing at regionals on June 15 in Redmond, Oregon.
A couple of the OHSET boys also made it to regionals. Kyle Parnell was named state champion in steer daubing, with William Chalk placing 4th in the same event. One of the team pinning groups also made it to regionals, placing 5th, comprised of Chalk, Parnell, and Thompson.
“It’s kind of an amazing sport,” Melissa said. “A lot of people don’t recognize equestrian as a sport. These kids are going out and they’re not just taking care of themselves and their own thing, they’re taking care of their animals and keeping them in good shape. It’s like two separate minds going out competing in these events together.”
Melissa said the team begins practicing for the season every November and attend three district meets, one in February, one in March, and one in April. It is those meets that determine who goes on to state, depending on how the students place.
The state competition was held on the weekend on May 7.