Yampa brothers make Colorado rodeo history
Steamboat Springs — If last weekend was any indication, high school rodeo in the state of Colorado could very well belong to the Logan boys for the next few years.
Eric Logan, who just finished his junior year at Soroco High School in Oak Creek, and his younger brother, eighth-grader Jace, made Colorado history at the Colorado State High School Rodeo Association and Colorado Junior High Rodeo Association championships last weekend in Craig. The brothers, who live outside of Yampa on their family ranch, were each named the overall state champion in their respective divisions — the first time in state history that two brothers had done such a thing.
“It’s almost like a reward. We’ve been trying to work hard at it all spring and most of the winter, practicing every day,” Eric said. “We were set up pretty good from the season. So we just decided we had to go down there and stay consistent like we tried to do all season. We knew if we could stay consistent, it would turn out fine.”
Eric was the boys’ all-around high school winner with 385.5 points, nearly 100 points ahead of Nathrop’s Jase Staudt. Jace was the junior high all-around winner with 742 points, holding off the 636 of Avondale’s Braxton Morgan.
The success is a little surprising considering neither competed at the high school or junior high level until last season, although both have been involved with the National Little Britches Rodeo Association for most of their lives. Eric said he got involved with the high school rodeo scene last year as a sophomore after some of his high school friends talked him into it.
“Last year wasn’t the best season that we’ve ever had. It made us want to work at it a little harder, and it paid off this year,” Eric said. “Last year, we were just kind of getting into the swing of things — new competition and stuff like that. So we weren’t real familiar with the association. Just kind of getting our feet wet.”
While both found plenty of success last season, it wasn’t anything like last weekend in Craig. On top of winning the overall championship, Eric took first place in steer wrestling and first in team roping, alongside Craig’s Yancey Weber. He also finished fourth in calf roping.
Jace took first in the bareback, first in chute dogging, first in tie-down roping, second in goat tying and second in the saddle bronc.
“Yeah, it’s pretty motivating because there is still some more stuff you can do better in. And you just want to keep going,” Jace said. “This year, we came in and kind of wanted to come in with guns blazing.”
Both boys credited much of their success to Steamboat Springs ranch manager Chad Bedell, who won a World Championship belt buckle in steer wrestling in 1996.
“It’s always nice having that kind of knowledge around, from somebody that’s been there and done that,” Eric said. “He would come up and make an hour drive from Steamboat every day to help us practice. A lot of our success goes to him.”
Both boys will now turn their attention toward nationals. Eric will go to Rock Springs, Wyoming, for the high school competition in July. Jace will go to Des Moines, Iowa, for the junior high competition in late June. Jace also qualified for nationals a year ago but feels he is much better prepared this time around.
“Last year, I was pretty small. We were not quite as serious, and we were this year,” Jace said. “So yeah, I feel a little bit better going in.”
With rodeo being a predominantly individual sport, Eric expects high school to feel a lot different next year with his brother competing against him. There is also a third brother, Kody, who will be in seventh grade next year and looks to follow in both his brothers’ footsteps.
“It’s always entertaining and it’s a lot of fun to go practice every day with them,” Eric said. “Next year, it’s really going to turn into competition because we are going to be competing against each other. We are going to be in the same age group now, since he’s coming into high school. Competition is going to get cranked up a little more.”
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