ALVA, Okla. – Talon Roseland has seen the best steer wrestlers in the Central Plains Region compete for the top honors in all of college rodeo.
Now a senior at Northwestern Oklahoma State University, Roseland has placed himself in that category. He is the No. 2 man in the region behind teammate Cody Devers, but Roseland is gaining ground. He did so this past weekend by winning the bulldogging title at the Oklahoma State University rodeo in Stillwater.
“This helps, because the points will help me in qualifying for the college finals,” said Roseland of Marshalltown, Iowa. “I think I’ve made the short round most of the time I’ve been to Stillwater, and now I’ve got a buckle with Pistol Pete on it.”
He’s talking about the OSU mascot, but the buckle is just one aspect of the rewards he received with the crown. He moved to within 15 points of Devers, of Perryton, Texas. They are among eight Rangers who are in the top 15 of the standings.
Roseland opened the competition with a 5.5-second run, good enough for fourth in the first round. He then posted a 4.8 in the championship round to win the two-run aggregate by six-tenths of a second. Devers, who finished in a tie for second place overall, won the hort round with a 4.6-second run.
They were joined in the final round with several other Rangers, including fellow bulldogger Ethan Price of Leedey, Okla., who finished third in the opening round. Other key Northwestern cowboys were Maverick Harper of Stephenville, Texas, who finished fourth in tie-down roping, and Grayson Allred of Kanarraville, Utah, who finished second in both rounds and the average in team roping with his partner, Sam Stamper of OSU.
When the points were tallied, Northwestern had finished second for the second time in a row. Through each of the first three rodeos, the Rangers men have been among the top two all season.
“As a team, I expect us to win the region and get a good team out to the college finals,” Roseland said. “I think we can get some things done there. I’d like for us to have all the year-end champions in all the timed events and dang sure send three bulldoggers to the finals.”
The top two teams in each region advance to the College National Finals Rodeo, which will take place next June in Casper, Wyo. The top three individuals in each event also qualify. That’s why it’s important for each member of the team to get as many points as possible at each regional rodeo.
The Northwestern women finished the OSU rodeo in a tie for first place. The Rangers were led by Jenny Massing of Ponoka, Alberta, who won the short round and finished second in the two-run aggregate in goat-tying. Massing didn’t place in the first round with an 8.2-second run, but she was half a second faster than the field with a 7.1 in the championship round.
Other Rangers who earned points were breakaway ropers Ashlyn Moeder of Oakley, Kan., who finished fifth and Alyssa Gabrielson of Perham, Minn., who placed sixth. Taylor Munsell of Arnett, Okla., finished in a tie for fifth in the opening round but was unable to earn a qualified time in the short round.
It’s proof that the hard work in practice is paying off for the men and the women.
“Probably the greatest thing that Stockton does is he always has good steers to run, and we can run as many as we want,” Roseland said of Northwestern rodeo coach Stockton Graves. “He has ways for us to improve ourselves.
“We have weekly jackpots, which gives us a chance to compete. Getting behind the barrier in competition never hurts you and always makes you better because of it.”
It seems to be the secret to Northwestern’s rodeo success.