Mesalands men clinch rodeo regional title

Kimberly Hanna

For the first time in the program’s history, the Mesalands Community College men’s rodeo team clinched the Grand Canyon Regional Championship title in Las Cruces April 29-30. The men’s team finished the season with a total of 6,841.5 points, ending New Mexico State University’s 8-year winning streak.

“Normally we have one or two students that excel. This year we have many students that compete well in just about every event,” C.J. Aragon, Mesalands rodeo coach, said. “Also this year our Men’s Team dominated in steer wrestling, bareback riding and bull riding.”

In Las Cruces, Jordan Spears of Palo Cedro, Calif. had a strong showing in bull riding, earning him the championship title. Spears also took third place in the men’s all-around and fourth place in bareback riding.

Francis Marchand of Omak, Wash. also shined at the Grand Canyon Regional Finals Rodeo. He claimed the Men’s All-Around Championship title and finished second in saddle bronc riding.

The Mesalands women’s team ended the season strong, finishing in fourth place. Shelby Rita of Sunset Beach, Hawaii lead the women’s team, taking sixth place in barrel racing and 14th in breakaway roping.

For the fourth consecutive year, Coach Aragon was named the Grand Canyon Region Coach of the Year. The Mesalands rodeo team also won a “Most Improved Rodeo of the Year” award for the college’s efforts in organizing a successful on-campus rodeo each September.

“Our team’s performance is pretty impressive,” Aragon said. “We will have most of our students returning next year, so we are in good shape for a successful 2011-2012 season.”

Other individual standings at NMSU include:

J2 Bridges

Second place, bareback riding

Fourth place, men’s all-around

Fifth place, steer wrestling

Chase Massengill

Eighth place, team roping header

Ninth place, steer wrestling

Tenth place, men’s all-around

Tenth place, tie-down roping

Tyrel Virden

Third place, steer wrestling

KC Peterson

Third place, bareback riding

Michael Ortega

Fifth place, team roping header

Nicole Kline

Sixth place, barrel racing

Ty Nuffer

Sixth place, saddle bronc riding

Dominic Silva

Sixth place, team roping heeler

Sawyer Stotts

Seventh place, bareback riding

Daniel Robertson

Eighth place, tie-down roping

Luke Hamilton

Eighth place, tie-down ropoing

William DeMarquis Tcherneshoff

Ninth place, saddle bronc riding

Cody Bullock

Ninth place, bull riding

Tegan Nevarez

Eleventh place, saddle bronc riding

Ferlando Tom

Eleventh place, bareback riding

Twelfth place, bull riding

Clay Elkins

Tenth place, steer wrestling

James Ellet

Eleventh place, steer wrestling

Tyler McCormick

Fifteenth place, steer wrestling

Tel Honeycutt

Fifteenth place, team roping header

Kalob Lepp

Thirteenth place, team roping heeler

Kayla Johnson

Fifteenth place, barrel racing