Finishing 48 points in the lead after the final regular season show on Feb. 17, the University of Wisconsin-River Falls IHSA (Intercollegiate Horse Show Association) Western Show Team was named 2017-18 Zone 7 Region 3 Team Champions. 

The UW-River Falls team competed against eight other teams from the Midwest over the course of the 2017-18 season.

As team champions, one rider from each level will go on to compete in the semi-final competition in New York March 17 - 18. Individuals who were grand champion or reserve champion riders in their division will also advance.

Students and categories representing UW-River Falls at the semi-finals are:

  • Open Reining – Danielle Paulson (animal science major from Pine Island, Minn.)
  • Open Horsemanship – Autumn Kappers (animal science major from Spring Valley, Minn.), Danielle Paulson (animal science major from Pine Island, Minn.)
  • Advanced Horsemanship – Jackie Bucher-Thayer (agricultural business major from Ridgeland), Jennifer Lorenz (agricultural business major from Onalaska), Rachel Shamro (agricultural business major from Hayward)
  • Novice Horsemanship – Sydni Loose (animal science major from Cedar Grove), Kaycee Hatch (animal science major from Racine)
  • Intermediate Horsemanship – Kendyl Bennett (accounting major from Preston, Minn.), Erica Kolstad (animal science major from Elk River, Minn.
  • Beginner Horsemanship – Sammy Abrahamson (agricultural education major from Minneapolis), Jessica Oldroyd (psychology major from River Falls)

The semi-finals in New York are one of three semi-final competitions going on around the country. The top three overall placing teams and the top first through fourth placing individuals at semi-finals will advance to the IHSA national championship in Harrisburg, Penn., May 5-6.

Danielle Paulson, the AQHA Cup Champion (high point rider) for 2017-18, accumulated 100 points in open reining and open horsemanship so she advances directly to nationals.

For more information, email Coach Janie Huot at or call 715-425-3523.

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