North Lake freshman Nathan Gilbert, a member of the Equestrian Team that competes in for State in the two timed events of Breakaway Roping and Working Rancher. North Lake falls in the Eastern Oregon District, which is just one of seven in the state. Gilbert is joined on the team by fellow freshman Laurena Schmidt.
The Equestrian Team competes three times in district competitions that all take place at Redmond. North Lake completed its third and final competition of the season on the weekend of April 19 through April 21. After the third competition, competitors find out whether or not they have made it to the state level.
Contestants in each event must place in the top 3 of the cumulative scores of each of the three district meets. Gilbert, who has not yet learned what place he received, has finished in the top 3 in Breakaway Roping and Western Rancher.
Gilbert, who is coached by Audrey Arballo, comes from great competitive stock. His older brother, Colton Gilbert also earned a spot at state for two of his four years. This was when the Gilbert family, and, coincidentally, coach Arballo lived in Paisley.
Gilbert now resides in North Lake, as does Arballo, who has joined forces with the young stallion, coaching him all the way to state. Breakaway Roping, according to Arballo, is when contestants rope live cattle after the cattle come out of a shoot. Working Rancher is a competition that involves roping horsemanship and sorting live cattle.
“I’m very proud of how well they competed for their first year,” said Arballo of her two freshmen.