Short-handed FFA judging team wins state championship
Members of the FFA state championship meats judging team are (from left) Macy Davis, Kiersten Scott and Aubrey Davis.
By Rod Haxton, editor
One of Kiersten Scott’s goals before graduating was to have a photo in the Scott Community High School gym with the other state championship teams.
That’s going to happen after Scott and her teammates once again earned the FFA meats judging state title following competition held in Manhattan on May 4.
The SCHS spring graduate, along with cousins Aubrey Davis and Macy Davis, join the 2010 squad as meats judging state champions from the local FFA chapter.
“It’s unbelievable,” says Scott. “It’s something I’ve thought about since the start of the year and it still hasn’t hit me that we did it.”
She was also the individual state champion with 641 points - 34 better than the runner-up.
As for having their 4x6 foot team photo hanging in the gym, it’s sort of a “bittersweet” feeling for Aubrey. It means that the photo of the championship team on which her two brothers were members will be coming down.
“Chris and Austin were there when we won the championship,” says Aubrey, who is also the daughter of FFA instructor Kevin Davis. “They were a little bummed out that they won’t be on the wall anymore, but they were happy for me and the rest of our team.”
Another state title has been on the minds of the Scott City squad since their fourth place finish a year ago. With Scott and Aubrey returning, Kevin began the hunt for additional team members.
He found one - sophomore Macy Davis.
“She’s very smart and she’d judged some her freshman year, so I felt she was probably our best prospect,” says Kevin.
And since Kevin is also her uncle, “there’s sort of a family expectation,” says Macy with a grin. “I was willing to give it a shot.”
Having a sophomore with limited judging experience was only one challenge facing SCHS. The bigger factor was opting to compete as a three-person team.
Even though only the top three scores are used in competition, teams normally consist of four members.
“That put a lot more pressure on all of us,” says Scott. “We didn’t have any room for error.”
The first competition for the team was during their annual trip to Texas over the spring break. They won the team title at West Texas State University and finished second at Clarendon College.
“I felt we could be pretty decent before the Texas trip,” says Kevin. “I was a little surprised at how well the girls did.”
They followed that with a convincing 200 point win over arch rival Satanta at the district contest during which the three SCHS team members finished first, second and third.
Kevin was convinced the team could finish in the top three at state, but he also knew there was no room for mistakes.
“I told Kiersten and Aubrey they could miss no more than one question on the written test and no more than four or five on the (meats) identification phase,” he says. “I knew they would have to help pick Macy up.”
As it turned out, Macy held her own.
The three girls combined to miss just one question on the written phase of the test and all three girls finished in the top eight, led by Scott (first), and followed by Aubrey (fourth) and Macy (eighth).
“We knew what we needed to work on and it paid off,” says Aubrey, who was competing in her third and final state contest. She was on the team that finished 10th her freshman year in addition to last year’s fourth place finish. Once a team has earned a state championship the members aren’t allowed to compete at the state level again.
“I wish I could do this again my senior year, but at least I don’t have to deal with the pressure of coming back next year and knowing that it’s my last chance to win state,” she adds.
“From the time meats judging season began all I ever heard was that we were going to win state,” says Macy. “I’m pleasantly surprised at how well I did.”
Scott couldn’t imagine a better way to end her high school career before attending Clarendon (Tex.) College where she will also be part of the meats judging team.
“Mr. Davis had high expectations for us from the start and the three of us worked very hard,” adds Scott. “We set a goal to be state champions and we got it done.”
However, their high school judging careers aren’t finished just yet. As the state champions, they will be competing in the national contest to be held in Louisville and Lexington, Ky., on Oct. 30-31. In Scott City’s previous trip to nationals they finished eighth.
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