Hard work yields big dividends for Jorgenson
By Kate Ruggles
Farmer Staff Writer
Sam Jorgenson, 18, of Watford City, qualified and competed in two rodeo finals this summer, the National High School (NHS) Rodeo Finals in Rock Springs, Wyo., and the NDRA Rodeo Finals in Watford City. After all her hard work, she came home with four trophies, the All-Around and Cutting Awards from the NHS Rodeo Finals and the All-Around and Ladies Breakaway award in the NDRA Finals.
“Rodeo has always been a family thing for us,” states Jorgenson, of herself, her mother, Pam, her father, Bill, and her younger sister. “All summer we ranch together during the day, then we rope at night and we are together on the weekends.”
Jorgenson states that there are not many things that families can do together in the same fashion as rodeo. Rodeo has given Jorgenson what many young people want and need - the chance to be invested in by her parents, the chance to learn from her parents, the chance to feel the support of her entire family, and the chance to pour into and support her younger sister.
Jorgenson states that she started youth-rodeoing when she was eight years old, and that of all the events, breakaway has always been her favorite.
“Everything happens so fast in breakaway,” states Jorgenson. “You have to react to it very quickly.”
Jorgenson competed in the NHS Rodeo Finals in June in Rock Springs, Wyo., where she took first place in the Cutting event and the All-Around. She then spent her summer doing two things, qualifying for the NDRA Rodeo Finals in September and getting ready for her freshman year of college at Black Hills State University.
“My goal was to win the Ladies Breakaway this year,” states Jorgenson.
That, and to qualify for the Team Roping event in the College Rodeo Finals which will take place next year. The first qualifying college rodeo took place on Sept. 14, in River Falls. But Jorgenson was unable to compete because as all her friends were heading to River Falls, she was headed to Watford City to compete in the NDRA Finals.
“It was a little weird heading the opposite direction as all my friends,” states Jorgenson. But Jorgenson loves the competition, and finishing what she starts.
On Sept. 13 and 14, she competed in the NDRA Rodeo Finals in the Ladies Breakaway event. She brought home first place in the Ladies Breakaway and brought home the All-Around award.
“Training for the rodeo takes a lot of time and it is a huge commitment,” states Jorgenson. “You have to train your horses and keep them in shape. And you have to practice for yourself as well.”
Jorgenson credits her parents with her success stating, “They haul us, my sister and myself, all over and they got us really great horses. They have supported us in every way that they could.”
Pam Jorgenson, Samantha’s mother, states that her daughter has worked really hard for the awards she has earned, and she and Bill, Jorgenson’s father, couldn’t be happier for her.
Jorgenson has been competing in the NDRA Rodeo for four years. In all, she has qualified for the 2011, 2012, and 2013 NDRA Finals. In 2011, Jorgenson took second place in the All-Around, and in 2012, she took the All-Around first place trophy.
Jorgenson is working to earn her degree in Exercise Science at Black Hills State University and has plans to continue competing in rodeo while in school.