Dairy Cow Evaluation team brings school first state title, national convention bound

BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - One high school team is milking its success for all it's worth by punching its ticket to a national convention.

Deane Bozeman School's Dairy Cow Evaluation team, as part of the Future Farmers of America program, came in first at the state competition in Tampa.

Now, they are national convention bound with a trip to Indianapolis later this year.

The team is "udder"-ly excited to be the 2018 Florida FFA State High School Dairy Judging Champions.

The team is comprised of two seniors, Kayla Bashore and Savannah Gardner, and two sophomores, Hayley Kolmetz and Caitlynn Oswald.

Bashore and Gardner plan on attending the University of Florida.

The program's adviser, Becky Peltonen, told us this achievement certainly wasn't easy, because there is a lack of dairy cows in Bay County.

To overcome this crucial detail, the team would travel about an hour to Marianna to study dairy cows. When not in Marianna, the team would review print-out colored sheets of cows.

"I had study sessions in my room four days a week every morning for an hour from November all the way until when we traveled on Friday to study. So the girls have been studying on their own time, they've been studying here. We took road trips to go look at cattle," Peltonen explained.

The four teammates said these experiences have made their bond stronger between field trips to competitions and even team dinners.

"It's such a cool opportunity because no one in Bay County has ever accomplished anything like this, especially with no dairy cows, so I'm super excited to be with all of them again," Gardner said.

"We've never been to Indianapolis," Oswald said.

The team even got cow-inspired manicures, or rather, "moo"-nicures while they were in Tampa.

On their way to that state convention, the team members said they studied during the entire trip down to Tampa.

For the two graduating seniors, they will travel to Indianapolis to compete with their fellow teammates in October.