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South Dakotans Named 97th Little International Winners
South Dakota Ag Connection - 02/20/2023

Rose Wendel, a freshman in liberal arts from Lamoure, North Dakota, was named the overall showman at the 97th Little International at North Dakota State University. Wendel is the daughter of Mike and Shari Wendel. Noah Helgoe, a sophomore in animal science and crop and weed science from Cavalier, North Dakota, was named reserve champion. Helgoe is the son of Chris and Kari Helgoe.

The 97th Little International was organized by the NDSU Saddle and Sirloin Club and held at Shepperd Arena on the NDSU campus.

"The Little International Livestock Show is the largest student-run event on the NDSU campus, involving over 300 students," said Lydia Lyons, Little I publicity chair and a senior in agribusiness from Lisbon, North Dakota. "The show features showmanship classes of beef, dairy, sheep, swine and goats as well as ham curing and public speaking contests."

The overall showman is determined using a round-robin contest where each species' overall showman is required to show all other species.

Winners of each species and other Little I competitions are as follows:


Champion – Madalyn Gieseke, Golden Valley, Minn., junior in crop and weed science, daughter of Brian and Angela Gieseke

Reserve Champion – Samantha Johnson, Mandan, N.D., junior in biological sciences, daughter of Kirk and Melissa Johnson


Champion – Jaxon Deckert, Arena, N.D., senior in animal science, son of Justin and Carrie Deckert

Reserve Champion – Hope Willson, Wimbledon, N.D., senior in animal science, daughter of Joel and Kristi Willson


Champion – Reanna Schmidt, Fargo, N.D., freshman, daughter of Rick and Renae Schmidt

Reserve Champion – Jolie Sanders, New Salem, N.D., freshman in pharmacy, daughter of Josh and Kyla Sanders


Champion – Helgoe

Reserve Champion – Kasi Holm, Ashley, N.D., junior in human development and family science, daughter of Barry and Roxanne Holm


Champion – Wendel

Reserve Champion – Alexis Vanderberghe, Cleveland, N.D., junior in animal science, daughter of Paul and Lori Vanderberghe

The show also included a novice division of showmanship for individuals who have never competitively shown their species. Novice winners were as follows:

Dairy – Madison Feiring, McHenry, N.D., freshman in animal science, daughter of Janell Feiring

Beef – Kamilla Knippling, South Shore, S.D., junior in animal science, daughter of Art and Amy Nelson

Sheep – Madison Scott, Spiritwood, N.D., freshman in animal science, daughter of Susan and Tim Scott

Swine –Erika Anderson, Rogers, N.D., sophomore in crop and weed science, daughter of Shawn and Linda Anderson

Goat – Jacklyn Pazdernick, New Salem, N.D., junior in nursing, daughter of Mike and Dana Pazdernick

Other contests that took place previously included:

Public speaking – Students prepared a speech about this year's Little I theme, Leaving a Legacy.

First – Isaac Huber, Jud, N.D., senior in agriculture systems management, son of Bryan and Emmy Huber

Second – Stetson Urlacher, Regent, N.D., sophomore in agriculture education, son of Gregg and Mary Urlacher

Third - Emma Honeyman, Regent, North Dakota, junior in agriculture economics, daughter of Gary and Tia Honeyman

Ham curing – The top 10 individuals' hams were auctioned off during the Little I night show.

First – Brooke Kunz, New Salem, N.D., senior in agriculture education, daughter of Ron and Margo Kunz

Second – Tasha Pond, Bowman, N.D., senior in veterinary technology, daughter of Jennifer Pond and Tracy Pond

Third – Rachel Blue, Henry, S.D., junior in animal science, daughter of Doug and Paula Blue

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