NHS grads continue to rodeo

Hannah Gross

Submitted photos

In this photo, Davin Tysdal competes in High School Rodeo in 2019.

Hannah Gross

NLJ Correspondent 


Class of 2020 Newcastle High School graduates Davin Tysdal, Jake Deveraux and Cooper Deveraux were practically born riding horses, and even though their senior high school rodeo season was canceled due to COVID-19, the three plan on continuing their careers at the college level. Tysdal is attending Casper College, and the Deveraux twins plan on going to school in Gillette. 

“I really enjoy the sport because I like riding horses and just the Western lifestyle in general,” Tysdal said. 

From July 17 through 23, the Deverauxs will be in Guthrie, Oklahoma, for the 2020 National High School Finals Rodeo at the Lazy E Arena, where they will compete in team roping together. Qualification comes by placing in the top four in the state, and according to their grandmother Carol Underberg, they were sitting in third. 

This is Jake’s third time qualifying and his brother’s second year. 

“I’m excited for them,” Underberg said. “They’ve come a long ways — they’re fun to watch.” 

All three of these seniors began riding when they were 3 or 4 years old and began entering competitions shortly after. 

“I live on a ranch and have always been around horses and roping. My dad rodeoed in high school and college and still ropes, so he’s helped me a ton over the years,” Tysdal said. 

“We were just kind of born into it,” Jake said. His grandmother Carol Underberg added that his family raises and sells horses, so the twins are always riding. 

Underberg enjoys watching her grandsons rodeo, and she’s traveled around the state to attend their events. 

“It’s fun chasing them,” she said. “They’re my favorite cowboys.” 

Tysdal’s favorite and best event “without a doubt” is team roping. He said it’s something he can do his whole life, and the potential cash prize is higher in team roping than in other events. Tysdal said he’s already won a few paychecks. This year, he and his roping partner sat among the top five in the state for their event. 

Tysdal hopes to one day make it to the professional level, and Jake said he wants to hopefully make a living off rodeo. 

“Roping is one of my passions, and it just fits so well with my lifestyle,” Tysdal said. “I plan to keep roping for as long as I can climb on a horse.”

Jake also enjoys team roping, in addition to calf roping, because it’s a “one-man show — just you and the horse.” Cooper said calf roping is also his favorite. 

“They sure like rodeo, and they sure like their horses,” Underberg said. 

Rodeo has taught the graduates important life lessons and skills, such as the importance of hard work and practice. 

“I’ve learned that you always have to work if you want to succeed. If you want to win, you have to practice,” Tysdal said. “If it’s something you love, then never give it up.”

Tysdal added that he’s also made many good friends in the sport.

Cooper said that rodeo has taught him how to work hard and keep going even after losing, and his brother added that it’s important to “just keep pushing.”

“Don’t ever base what you’re doing off someone else,” Cooper said. “Keep striving every day.” 

“They want to win, which gives them a drive to keep learning,” Underberg said. “I think they’ll do well in college rodeo.”

For these seniors, rodeo has been a part of who they are their entire lives, and they love it enough to put in the work and see the fruits of their labors. 

“Rodeo is important to me because I see it as a way of life,” Jake said.

Sara Sweet is also a graduating senior and part of the Newcastle Rodeo Club. A story featuring her rodeo career can be found in a future addition of the News Letter Journal.


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