Rodeo team dominates Hays

By KATIE LACKEY, Student Reporter

Photo by Melissa Couture
Photo by Melissa Couture

For team ropers Edgar Fierro and Kass Bittle, their plan of sticking to the basics paid off at the Fort Hays State University college rodeo.

“In the long go, we just wanted to go out there and make a snappy run,” Bittle of Kremlin, said.

The team-roping duo succeeded with a 7.1 in the first round, which was good enough to send them to the short round in three-way tie for first place. Their success carried on to the short round as they turned in a 7.8, which was fast enough for second place in that round. Their average time of 14.9 on two steers won them the average title in the team roping.

“I have confidence in Kass,” Fierro of Hennessy, said. “We just went in there and got it done, and it worked out in our favor.”

Fierro and Bittle were joined by other teammates in the short round. Maverick Harper of Stephenville, Texas, and partner Tanner Nall of Colcord, also turned in two solids run over the weekend, which helped them secure a third place finish in the average.

Grayson Allred of Kanarraville, Utah, pulled through with a fourth place finish in the tie-down roping. He was a 24.2 in the first round, but a faster time of 21 on his second calf helped him win points for the men’s team. Cole Patterson of Pratt Kansas, also earned points in tie-down roping. His first round time of 14.8 earned him 40 points, but a no time in the short round cost him a chance at the average.

Only two Northwestern steer wrestlers made it back to the short round, but they were able to claim the first and second spots. Joby Allen of Alva, split second place in the first round with a 5.3. He went on to throw his short round steer down in 5.5 seconds. His cumulative time of 10.8 on two steers was good enough to win the average. Cody Devers of Perryton, Texas, was not far behind. He was a 5.5 on both steers, giving him a cumulative time of 11 seconds, which was fast enough for second in the average.

The Northwestern men went on to win the team title with 380 points.

“We had a good rodeo with a team roping win and a bulldogging win,” head rodeo coach Stockton Graves said. “That’s one of the better rodeos we’ve had this year.”

The women’s team also found success in multiple events. Tearnee Nelson of Faith, South Dakota, won the first round of goat tying with a 7.8. She followed that up with another 7.8 in the short round. The pair of 7.8s earned her a second place finish in the average. She was accompanied in the short round by Jenny Massing of Alberta, Canada Massing tied and 8.4 in the first round. Then an 8.2 in the second round. She finished sixth in the average with a 16.6 on two runs.

Sara Bynum of Beggs, was the only Ranger to make the short round in barrel racing. She ran a 17.88 in the first round, which brought her back to the short round in fourth place. In the short round, she was able to win it with a 17.40. Her two runs earned her a second place finish in the average.

In the breakaway roping, three women made it back to the short round. Brandi Hollenbeck of Hutchinson, Kansas, finished second in the first round with a 3.1. She managed another second place finish in the short round with a 3.3. She finished out the weekend second in the average with a 6.4 on two runs. Katy Miller of Faith, South Dakota, finished ninth in the first round with a 3.7. She was a 5.2 in the short round, which earned her a fourth place finish in the round as well as the average. Ashlyn Moeder of Oakley, Kansas, also picked up some points in the breakaway. Her 3.5 in the first round had her sitting fourth, but a no time in the short go cost her any chance of being in the average.

The Northwestern women also won the team title at Fort Hays State University with 505 points.

“I tell them every weekend, they just can’t relax,” Graves said. “We’ve got one rodeo left, and it will make us or break us right here.”