Jefferson girl shows grand champion 4-H market steer

August 5, 2014
Julie Policz, right, showed the grand champion market steer at Tuesday’s 4-H Market Steer Show at the Greene County Fair. She is picture with her mother and father, Zora and Wyatt Policz. - Bob Niedbala / Observer-Reporter Order a Print

WAYNESBURG – It was Julie Policz’s seventh year participating in the 4-H Market Steer Show at the Greene County Fair, but it took more than luck for her to raise what was chosen Tuesday as the show’s top grand champion steer.

Policz, 14, a daughter of Zora and Wyatt Policz of Jefferson, said every day for about the past year she had to feed and water her steer, which she named “Night Train,” and exercise and groom him.

“It took a lot of work,” she said.

Leaving the show ring, after winning the top prize, Policz wiped tears from her eyes as she was greeted by hugs and congratulations from friends and well-wishers. This was the first time she showed a grand champion in the market steer show.

Policz also raises lambs and will be entering one in tonight’s 4-H Market Lamb Show. In addition, she participates in the market hog, sheep breeding, goat, beef heifer and dairy competitions. Policz will be a ninth grader this year at Jefferson-Morgan High School.

Policz steer was the champion in the heavyweight division and was the heaviest animal entered in the show, weighing 1,405 pounds.

The reserve grand champion for the show was shown by Curtis Patton. His 1,326 pound steer was named reserve champion of the heavyweight division.

This year, 33 steer were entered in the show. Steer showed Tuesday, as well as market lambs that will be shown today, will be sold at auction at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in the livestock barn.

During the steer show, animals were divided into three weight divisions with a champion and a reserve champion selected in each division. From the winners in each division, the overall grand champion and reserve grand champion were chosen. In the lightweight division, the champion was shown by Hannah Cole and the reserve champion by Christa Ziefel.

In the middleweight division, the champion was shown by Avery Berdine and the reserve champion by Austin Orndoff.

The judge for the show was Taylor Harrison, assistant coach of the West Virginia University livestock judging team. Harrison has a bachelor’s degree in animal science from Michigan State University. She grew up on a farm in Coldwater, Mich.

Bob Niedbala worked as a general assignment reporter for the newspaper for 27 years in the Greene County bureau. He received a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Pittsburgh.

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