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Niagara County 4-H members took top awards in several contests in state and Western New York competitions recently, which tested their horse knowledge and communication skills.

Twenty Niagara County 4-H members participated in the 2014 Regional 4-H Horse Bowl contest against 4-H members from Erie County. They were tested on their knowledge of all types of horses and horse information. Top contestants in the junior and senior divisions went on to participate in the state Horse Bowl contest at Cornell University in Ithaca.

In the novice division, the team of Grace Hannon, 8, Wes Hannon, 8, and Hannah Hannon, 11, all of Sanborn, placed third. The team of Maggie Shocknesse, 8, of Ransomville, Arianna Allure, 9, of Lockport, Cameron Rowlands, 11, and Clayton Rowlands,13, both of Sanborn, placed fourth.

In the individual competition, Wes Hannon was third in individual, Grace Hannon was seventh, Hannah Hannon was ninth and Cameron Rowlands was 10th.

In the junior division, the team of Rose Paxon, 12, of Clarence Center, Samantha Chilcott, 12, and Melanie Morgan, 13, both of Lockport, Max Shocknesse, 12, and Bailey Shocknesse, 9, both of Ransomville, placed third. The team of Ashley Randall, 13, Lucy Ebole, 10 and Katie Widmer, 11, all of Lockport, and Madison Marchetti, 12, of Wilson placed fourth.

Individually, Rose Paxon was first, Ashley Randall was sixth, while Lucy Ebole and Bailey Shocknesse tied for 10th place. Rose Paxon will be competing on the Region 1 team at the state contest.

In the senior division, the team of Quinn Wilson, 15, of Lockport, Ariel Urczyk, 17 of Lewiston, and Josh Randall, 14, of Lockport, placed third. In the individual senior standings, Quinn Wilson was third, Ariel Urczyk was eighth and Josh Randall was ninth. Josh went on to the state Horse Bowl.

Teams also competed recently in the New York State 4-H regional hippology contest against teams from five other Western New York counties. They were tested on their horse judging ability, tack and feed knowledge, along with other areas of horse care. All participants will be invited to the state hippology contest, which will be held at the New York State Fair in August.

The junior team placed fourth. Team members were: Katie Widmer, 11, of Lockport, Ashley Randall, 13, of Cambria, Lucy Ebole,10, of Cambria, and Bailey Shocknesse, 9, of Ransomville. Katie Widmer placed seventh individually.

The senior team also placed fourth overall. Team members were: Ariel Urczyk, 17, of Lewiston, Serena Nichols, 16, of Niagara Falls, and Josh Randall, 14, of Cambria. Ariel Urczyk placed seventh in individuals and Serena Nichols was eighth.

Niagara County 4-H members also participated in the 4-H Region 1 communications event in Cuba.

Emily Delsignore placed second in the senior individual category with her presentation on “Blue Eyes in Horses.” Anna Spoth placed first in the junior individual category with her discussion of “How Miniature Horses Are Used as Therapy Animals.” And the team of Ashley Randall and Rose Paxon placed third in the junior team category with its presentation comparing English riding versus Western riding.

All four girls were invited to compete at the state 4-H Equine Communications event in May in Ithaca.