Mesalands rodeo team clinches 2 championships

Staff Report

As the Mesalands Community College rodeo team prepares to host the Grand Canyon Intercollegiate Spring Rodeo Friday and Saturday, team members have won two event championships and one member has qualified for the 2015 College National Finals Rodeo (CNFR) after their performances at two recent rodeo competitions in Arizona.

Sophomore Jake Carr of Saratoga Springs, New York brought home the championship bull riding title at the University of Arizona rodeo in Tucson, Arizona with 77 points. Carr was the only bull rider that had a qualified ride at the rodeo.

“Tucson was another solid rodeo for us, obviously in a one header you get one chance to compete. It’s all or nothing, no second chances,” said Tim Abbott, Mesalands’ interim rodeo coach.

Team ropers freshman Chance Hunter (header) and freshman Sam Tyler (heeler) both from Chinle, Arizona, have consistently competed well this season. They were third at the rodeo with a time of 8.2 seconds.

In bareback riding, sophomore Edmiles Harvey of Tsalini Springs, Arizona, took second place with 62 points.

Sophomore Jacob Rounds of Brooklyn, New York ended the rodeo third in steer wrestling.

Freshman Chace Valdez of Estancia, took sixth in tie down roping. Valdez did not draw a very good calf, but he persisted and earned some points during the rodeo, Abbott said. Valdez  is still leading the region in this event and will most likely secure his CNFR qualification.

The Mesalands men’s team finished third at the University of Arizona rodeo with 497 points.

At the Navajo Technical College rodeo in Window Rock, Arizona, sophomore Devyn Sisneros of Santa Rosa brought home the saddle bronc riding championship title. Sisneros won first in the long round, second in the short round, and first in the average.

Harvey was second in the average in bareback riding. After his performance in Window Rock, Harvey has guaranteed his ticket to the 2015 CNFR.

“I feel really good and I’m glad that I qualified for the college finals again, but right now I’m really trying to qualify for the bareback riding title in the region,” Harvey said. “I’m determined to go for the regional title first and then focus on the college finals later.”

This will be Harvey’s second consecutive qualification to the CNFR.

In bull riding,  Carr and freshman Kasy Baker of Cottonwood, California, split for third and fourth place in the average. Sophomore Adriano Long of Dilkon, Arizona, took fifth in the average in steer wrestling.

Freshman Chance Stucker of Orville, Washington, had a strong performance at Window Rock. He was fourth in the long round, second in the short round, and finished second in the average.

For the Women’s Team, sophomore Betty Pack of Aztec won fourth in the short round and fourth in the average. Pack is making a run for her third CNFR qualification.

The men’s ream ended the Navajo Technical College rodeo in third place and the women’s Team in sixth place.

“We had a fantastic rough stock rodeo at Navajo Technical College. In the long rounds, all five of our rough stock contestants made qualified rides,” Abbott said.

The Mesalands Rodeo Team will be hosting the Grand Canyon Intercollegiate Spring Rodeo this weekend at the Quay County Fairgrounds.

“I expect to win it again,” Coach Abbott said. “When we perform to our full potential, there is no other team in the region that’s any better than us and we are ready.”

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