Smith ropes in scholarships


Brisa Aguilar , Student Life Writer

The bell rings. She feels the push and shoves of the other competitors as she rushes towards more than a dozen calves. She paces up, jumps, and tackles the closest calf near her. She tries to hold the calf down as she wrestles it.  She quickly takes the rope from her waist and pulls it around the calf’s neck. She can feel her grip loosing as the calf squirms, but she doesn’t let go. She ties the rope and pulls the calf up. The calf protests, but she continues to pull it towards the center of the arena. She can hear the crowd roaring and victory is hers.

On March 3, freshman Sarah Ashlynn Smith attended a calf scramble at the Houston Livestock Rodeo.  Calf scrambles are an event where 30 students are placed in the middle of a rodeo arena and 15 calves are then released from their chutes. In order to win, one has to tackle a calf, halter it, and then walk it back to a designated square with the fastest time.

Smith won the Houston rodeo and received a $1,750 voucher. These vouchers will allow her to purchase a heifer to show next year as a sophomore. Smith will then have an opportunity to receive scholarships if she wins the showing next year.

“Once you have caught a calf in Houston, you can’t participate in their calf scramble again”, said Smith. ” However, I will receive an additional $500 from Houston when I complete my commitment at next year’s show”.

So far, Smith has attended two Texas FFA rodeos and caught calves in both. She attended the Fort Worth Rodeo and received another $500.

“It was my first rodeo to participate in.” said Smith. “After both of the rodeos, I was physically tired, but mentally, it was the most exhilarating thing I’ve ever done.”

Smith is enrolled in the CTE Principles of Agriculture and will be in Livestock Production next year. She will get the opportunity to work with a local mobile veterinarian clinic when she enters Veterinary Medical practicum. This will set her up to possibly attend A&M University to pursue a career in Vet Medicine.

“I plan to go to the Austin and San Antonio rodeo to participate in their programs as well,” said Smith.