Meet the Member Morgan Rosander
story by Ruth Nicolaus [ “Streaker is “like a big puppy dog,” Morgan said. “She’s very sweet and always wants attention.” Prada is a different […]
story by Ruth Nicolaus
Weston Kunkee is all business. Whether it’s in calculus class, the branding pen, his summer job, or in the rodeo arena, Weston gets the job done.
As a senior in the Nebraska High School Rodeo Association, the eighteen-year-old cowboy competes as a steer wrestler and a team roper, heeling for his younger brother, Dalton.
Weston, who lives near Eddyville, Nebraska, is a student at Callaway Public School. The best part of the day is lifetime sports, where they play horse shoes, badminton, golf, tennis, “fun stuff,” Weston said, “because we’re not all going to make pros” in sports.
The toughest class he has is calculus; it’s a college credit class. He has an A in the class, but it’s a lot of work.
He plays on both the offensive and defensive lines for the South Loup Bobcats (Callaway School and Arnold School combine in sports to make the South Loup team.) Last year, the Bobcats were state runner-up in Class D-1 in football, and this year, they made it to the second round of state playoffs, losing by a touchdown in overtime. Weston is also very involved in FFA, serving as president of his chapter. Last year, his nursery landscape team placed third at state, and he’s participated in district livestock judging, leadership workshops, and community service projects.
Weston is president of the senior class, is on the A-B Honor Roll, and has been since junior high. Only one point has kept him from the All A Honor Roll, and that is in English class. That one point “is just enough to drive me insane,” he said.
In the spring, he and his buddies pile into a pickup after school and go to brandings. They love helping out and the area ranches love to have the “young muscles” helping them.
For the steer wrestling, Weston rides a nineteen-year-old sorrel named Jasper. Jasper was purchased from Bill Manning, who has coached, helped and mentored many young Nebraska steer wrestlers. Jasper is “fully automatic,” Weston said. “There’s no question about what he will do. It’s the same run, the same go. He’s full-hearted and he’ll give you everything he has.” Like Jasper’s owner, “we’re all business when we do it.”
For the heeling, Weston rides a twenty-year-old horse named Hoss, a red roan. “He is fun to back into the box because he gets jacked up.” Inside the arena, “he’s just awesome,” Weston said. Outside the arena, Hoss is calm and anyone can ride him.
Weston knows he wants to college rodeo, possibly for Mid-Plains Community College and rodeo coach Garrett Nokes, in McCook, Neb. Whatever he studies will be agriculture related.
This summer, Weston worked for a local farmer and rancher, checking cattle, putting out salt and mineral, laying out irrigation pipe, fixing fence, and spraying musk thistle.
He qualified for the state finals this past spring in both of his events, finishing in the top twenty in the steer wrestling.
He has an older brother, Wyatt, who is a college rodeo athlete at Mid-Plains in North Platte, and a younger brother, Dalton, who is sixteen. He is the son of Dean and Angie Kunkee.
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