Rodeo can be a dangerous sport. If you’ve ever watched a minute of it, you know that. You’ve got people riding, oftentimes, ill-tempered animals and jumping off them. Accidents are bound to happen. They have happened and they’ll continue to happen as long as cowboys and cowgirls make the decision to put their bodies on the line for the love of the sport.
Another such accident happened Saturday night at the at the North Dakota High School Rodeo Association state finals in Bowman. Linton senior Jake Bauman took a nasty fall in the steer wrestling and had to be airlifted to a Bismarck hospital for surgery after breaking his femur. They put pins in his hip to fix the break. It was announced during Sunday’s short round that Bauman’s surgery turned out well and he was scheduled to head home that day.
To pay tribune to Bauman, the 2009 boys all-around champion, many contestants put the No. 7 on their horses. No. 7 was Bauman’s back number this season. Bareback riding champion Casey Breuer used athletic tape to put a 7 on his bronc prior to his ride. He won with a 77-point ride.
Many of the ladies painted No. 7 on the hindquarters of their horses, several of them in pink since it was "Tough Enough to Wear Pink" day in honor of rodeo’s commitment to Breast Cancer Awareness.
While Bauman is a tough cowboy and is sure to bounce back from this injury, I’m taking this opportunity to wish him a speedy and strong recovery. I hope to see you back in the arena soon.
Mandan’s Casey Breuer rides his bronc en route to the bareback riding short-round victory and his second consecutive state title. Breuer was one of several contestants to put the No. 7 on his horse Sunday in honor of Jake Bauman, a senior from Linton who was badly injured on Saturday.