WYANDOTTE — Kali Thompson, a sophomore at Wyandotte High School and a member of the Cherokee Nation, has captured a second state title in light rifle shooting and a position on the Kansas High School Rodeo Association (KHSRA) national team.
Contestants qualify at their state/provincial level and the top four contestants from each state or province can compete at the National High School Finals Rodeo (NHSFR).
Thompson has qualified in two events, goat tying and light rifle, for the 70th annual NHSFR, which will be July 15-21 at Rock Springs, Wyoming.
She made the short go in shooting and finished 16th as a freshman.
Thompson has been competing for three years.
“It’s a lot of fun,” she said. “I have always liked shooting guns.”
There are three positions in shooting: standing, kneeling and prone.
“I like prone a lot, but the others you have to work out,” Thompson said. “It comes with time. There’s always room for improvement. I am just trying to continue moving forward with my shooting and other events, try to keep on pushing.”
Featuring more than 1,650 contestants from 43 states, five Canadian provinces, Australia and Mexico, the NHSFR is the world’s largest rodeo.
In addition to competing for more than $200,000 in prizes, NHSFR contestants will also be competing for more than $350,000 in college scholarships and the chance to be named an NHSRA world champion.
To earn this title, contestants must finish in the top 20, based on their combined times or scores in the first two rounds to advance to the short go.
World champions will then be determined based on their three-round combined times or scores.
In addition to rodeo, Thompson enjoys hunting, running track, playing basketball and is an active member of the Bar-None Cowboy Church.
To prepare for Nationals, Thompson will be tying goats, conditioning her horse and working with her shooting coach, Mike Nelson of Excalibur Sporting Goods in Afton.
Her sponsors include Girls with Guns Clothing, Charlie 1 Horse Hat Company, Hawke Optics, Simple Equine and Double A Forge.