UTM kicked off the 49th annual rodeo on Thursday, April 6, 2017 to a stadium choir singing the National Anthem as UTM riders rode in on their horses holding American flags.
The rodeo with the bareback riding competition. UTM bareback competitor Houston Herbert came out on top with an eight second buzz bringing in 70 points, earning him the overall top spot in the bareback competition.
Calf roping was the next event to take place. In this competition, cowboys try to beat the clock and tie down their calves. UTM contestant Craig Parks corralled his calf in 18.2 seconds and took the lead. Pearl River Community College competitor Andrew Burks went next and finished in 14.7 seconds to finish in first place. Ryder Ladner, also from PRCC, took the third-place spot with 24.4 seconds.
Following calf roping was breakaway roping. The first few girls to compete received no time for their ‘break away’ calves. Jesse Haynes from University of Arkansas-Monticello broke the ‘no time’ streak with a four second tie off and henceforth gaining the top position in this competition. Kaitlin McWhorter from Murray State University ended this section of the rodeo with a 6.9 second run, coming shy behind Haynes for the second-place spot.
Dalton Kingery from Missouri Valley College took the full eight second ride rounding off 76 points, and placed first as took the reins of first as the only full ride of the night.
UTM steer wrestler, Ross Mitchell, a second generation cowboy completed a seven second run. Up next was Cord Barricklow from Southern Arkansas University with a 5.3 second run, stealing the first-place title. Landon Burns from Murray State finished a 4.6 second run taking the overall top spot. East Mississippi Community College third generation all-around cowboy Marcus Theriot followed with a 6.6 second run to place third.
Murray competitor Hannah O’Brian kicked off the goat tying section with an 8.2 second run. Callie Stanhouse from Three Rivers College finished at 6.7 seconds to tie for first. SARU’s Jacie Sullivan corralled in 6.6 seconds for first place and MVC’s Kirbie Crouse took the third-place title of the night with a 6.8 second run.
In team roping, leading the pack was Ross Mitchell from UTM and EMCC teammate Ethan Wheeler with a 6.1 second tie up. With no time for the majority of the competitors, Cooper Lee from SARU and Jace Harris from EMCC came in with a 7.5 round-up gaining the second place spot.
University Arkansas Cossatot barrel racer, Scout Smith came stampeding around her barrels with a 14.12 run to take the first place position. With Suzanna Mosley from EMCC not far behind, she took second with a 14.26. MVC rider Alyssa Dittmer with a 14.48-barrel run reining third in the barrel racing competition.
In bull riding, UTM’s cowboy, Ryan McDaniel was bucked off before the buzzer could strike eight. McDaniel is counted as one of the top 15 best in the world as well as rookie of the year. With no time for seven out of eight of the bull riding competitors, Justin Stoltz from MVC finished first with a resounding 79-point ride ending Thursday’s 2017 UTM rodeo.