A team of students from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls took first place in the National Forage Bowl competition held in conjunction with the 75th Annual Conference of the American Forage and Grassland Council in St. Louis, Mo., Jan. 6-9.

The team consisted of Brett Breitenfeldt, Wausau; Jordyn Bush, Lakeville, Minn.; Kyle Hilger, Bloomer; Derek Lenzen, Chaska, Minn.; Anthony Neitzke, Egg Harbor; Morgan Orr, Waupaca; and Leanna Schneider, Foley, Minn. The students represent four different program areas at UW-River Falls: Crop and Soil Science, Animal Science, Dairy Science and Agricultural Business.

The competition is an undergraduate team event with a format similar to the game show Jeopardy. Categories cover all aspects of forage production and management.

This is the fourth year UW-River Falls has competed in the Forage Bowl and the first time the team took top honors. In addition to the team award, member Derek Lenzen received first place in a separate forage identification contest.

The UWRF team competed against five other undergraduate schools including Kansas State University, Purdue, Auburn, North Carolina State University and University of Mount Olive.

The team was coached by Yoana Newman, assistant professor of Crop Science and State Extension Forage Specialist. A USDA - National Institute on Food and Agriculture (NIFA) grant awarded to Newman helped support the team travel to the competition. The grant has also supported new equipment for the classroom and several undergraduate field research projects.