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Whitewood to national high school rodeo finals

By Carolyn B. Edwards BCC Staff Writer

Whitley Whitewood, a sophomore at Medina High School, has qualified for a position on the Texas National High School Rodeo Team. She will join her teammates in Rock Springs, Wyoming, July 13-19, to compete in the 66th annual National High School Finals Rodeo (NHSFR).
Whitewood will compete in the goat-tying competition.
The Courier did our first story about Whitewood in 2008 when she was 10 and had won the World Champion All-Around Cowgirl in the 9-12-year-old division in the American Junior Rodeo Association National Finals Rodeo. She earned the all-around title by ranking in the top levels in pole bending, barrel racing, and goat tying.
In 2010, Whitewood earned an $8,000 scholarship at the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo R-D Youth Barrel Race. In 2011, Whitewood competed in the National Junior High Rodeo Finals in goat tying and barrel racing.
A well-rounded person, Whitewood also participates in school athletics and academic competitions. She has been rodeoing since she was five.
The NHSFR is the world's largest rodeo, with over 1,500 contestants from 42 states, Canada and Australia. The competition offers over $200,000 in prizes and $350,000 in scholarships.
To be named a NHSFR National Champion, contestants must finish in the top 20, based on their combined scores in the first two rounds, to advance to the final round. National champions are then determined based on their 3-round combined scores.
The Saturday, July 19, championship performance will be televised nationally on RFD-TV. Every performance will also be broadcast live on NHSFRATV.com.
To follow Whitewood's progress at the event, visit NHSRA.org daily for complete results.
Whitley's father, Todd Whitewood, won the top calf roping title at the National Collegiate Championships in 1980 and is one of Bandera County's native rodeo cowboys honored on the National Rodeo Champions marker on the courthouse lawn. Mother Serena Whitewood teaches in the Medina ISD.