The Nevada State High School Rodeo finals will be from June 13-15 in Ely this year.
High school rodeo is all but gone from Pahrump, but there are still some die-hard cowboys and cowgirls still participating here in town. The PVT will celebrate some of those cowboys and cowgirls this week.
Senior Jared Groene is one of those cowboys, and he is off to the state finals for team roping.
Groene just missed going to nationals by .25 points as a junior in cutting. This year he was ranked in the top three and will be going to the National High School Finals Rodeo in Rock Springs, Wyoming on July 13-19.
Last year Groene broke his foot and missed some high school rodeos and this year he broke two collar bones, which affected his standings for state in cutting.
“Cutting has ended for the year and I ended up third in state because I was in a horse wreck on Valentine’s Day. My horse tripped when I was healing and rolled over on top of me. I shattered my left collar bone and broke my right one,” Groene said.
Groene said he was supposed to stay out for 9 weeks, but was back in the saddle after only 5 weeks. The recovery time made him miss two rodeos. He also said the injury affected his performance.
“So I could not ride for a while and this affected me physically and mentally. I was leading the cutting until I broke my collar bones, but after that I fell to third place. I was more cautious after the accident so I really didn’t go at it like I usually did and I was sore,” he explained.
Groene said he was going to come back strong this year in team roping and one of the reasons he was able to do this was because of his new partner, Josh Wines.
Wines is an unusual partner choice because he lives in Elko, which is a long way to go for practice.
“I found Josh through some friends. He just called me one day and said he needed a partner and I will do either end. People call us the “one day wonders” because we never get to practice. We have such a good time together and we just click. Pretty much every single weekend we will pull one good run together,” he said.
Groene has high expectations at state and his goal is to make nationals.
“Josh and I are in the top ten for team roping. There is a lot of work involved. I just don’t want to miss and I want to rope smart. I will be up against a lot of good ropers,” he said.
For Groene, there is no next year. After the high school rodeo circuit he will graduate and be working with his dad, who works for the Professional Bull Riders and the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association. After a year, Groene plans to go to college and get a business degree.
His mother, Judy Groene, says her son has the rodeo bug pretty bad. The one thing about high school rodeo in Nevada is that you have to be committed. The high school schedule starts in September and lasts until May.
“It is petty demanding and can keep you pretty busy,” Judy said. “I really don’t know the figure on the cost. It’s not cheap. We do it so Jared has this experience. It is a lifelong experience. Some parents want the kids to earn back the money and I don’t look at it that way.”
Judy says she pretty much has given up her weekends for the sake of rodeo this year.
“It is good family time and I have found a way to communicate with my son. The whole experience is great. The camaraderie is just great. There is also a lot of responsibility. He used to play baseball. With baseball you can put away the bat and ball and it’s done, but with animals you can’t do that,” she concluded.