story by Ruth Nicolaus For Phoenix Brown, time is of the essence on school mornings. The fourteen-year-old cowgirl, a member of the Nebraska Junior High […]
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Meet the Member Clay Holz
story by Ruth Nicolaus
Clay Holz has earned himself 43 buckles, and some of them have come through his accomplishments as a member of the Nebraska Junior High School Rodeo Association.
The fourteen year old cowboy competes in the tie-down roping, team roping, ribbon roping, goat tying, and chute dogging. He heels for Dane Pokorny, and he ropes for runner Jessica Stevens.
Clay, who lives six miles outside of Niobrara, Nebraska, rides a seventeen year old paint gelding named Paint Stick for the heeling and goat tying, and a seventeen year old red roan named Roanie for the tie-down roping.
He is an eighth grader at Niobrara Public School, where Industrial Tech is his favorite class. The students are making CO2 cars, which he enjoys. The next best thing about school is sports; he enjoys football and track.
For fun, Clay and his header, Dane ,like to rope the family’s mini zebu. The zebu was purchased to learn tie-down roping, but the mini squashed that. “The first time I roped him,” Clay remembers, “I got off, and he started coming back at me.” That’s when the zebu went from tie-down instruction to team roping instruction. Mr. Zebu is still mean, but he knows that if he doesn’t stand still so Dane can lean off his pony and grab the rope off his head, he’s not going far.
Clay competes in ranch rodeos as well, and started Indian rodeos this fall. He is part of the Santee Sioux Nation.
He competed at state junior high finals the last two years, finishing as the Nebraska Junior High State Champion Team Roper, the Champion Goat Tyer, and Tie-Down Roper. He is also the reserve champion in the ribbon roping, and finished tenth in the goat tying and sixteenth in the ribbon roping at the National Junior High Finals Rodeo.
He has an older sister, Abbigail, who is sixteen, and a younger brother, Cooper, who is eight. He is the sixth generation on the family ranch, and is the son of Orvil and Kelli Holz.