Shofner wrestles away the lead

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LOVINGTON, N.M. – Every great angler knows the value of a good honey hole.

The Shofner brothers of southeast Texas have one in the Lea County Fair and Rodeo. Cooper Shofner of Jasper, Texas, took advantage of the familiarity of Jake McClure Arena on Thursday to move into the overall steer wrestling lead, while brother Jacob Shofner of Huntsville, Texas, scored the fastest time of the week so far.

Cooper Shofner
Cooper Shofner

“This has been one of those rodeos we have a lot of confidence in,” Cooper Shofner said. “Jacob has placed here every year he’s been here, and I’ve placed most every year. It’s really good to do well here, because we’re heading to the Northwest, and it gives you a lot of confidence as you get ready to head there.”

He should have plenty. During the afternoon session, Cooper Shofner posted a 3.9-second run and is tied for second in the opening round. He then followed that with a 3.7 in the performance, making his 7.6-second cumulative time on two runs the fastest with two days of competition remaining in this year’s rodeo.

“We drove all night to get here, then slept in this morning and got ready,” he said. “I had a good steer on the first one. He was supposed to leave, run and stop, so I just took a good start and got him snared. Tonight I had another good one and had a good start. I tried to finish the steer a little better than I did the first one, and it worked out good.”

Jacob Shofner leads the second round with a 3.5-second run; he is tied for fifth in the average with a two-run time of 8.8 seconds. Neither brother is among the top 50 in the world standings, but they know there is still plenty of time to cash in. Doing well in Lovington would be a good start to the final two months of the season.

“It’s important to do well everywhere,” Cooper Shofner said. “The start of the season last fall went really well, but when the winter came, I had one of those down times. In the spring, it picked up a little bit. This summer I’ve been catching money, and here the last couple of weeks it’s been going really good. I thank God He always is faithful to provide.”

Leaning on faith is important, but so is relying on one’s own talent.

“The most important thing we talk about is being consistent,” he said. “If you consistently score good, consistently ride good and consistently make good runs, you’re going to consistently win when you run a good steer.”

That philosophy is working quite well in Lovington.

Lea County Fair and Rodeo
Lovington, N.M.
Aug. 5-8
Bareback riding leaders:
1. Jake Brown, 87 points on Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo’s Sadie’s Gal; 2. Kaycee Feild, 86; 3. Ryan Gray, 83; 4. Tyler Scales, 82; 5. Anthony Thomas, 77; 6. David Peebles, 76; 7. Richmond Champion, 75; 8. Wyatt Denny, 74.

Steer wrestling: First round leaders: 1. 2. Dean Gorsuch, 3.6 seconds; 2. (tie) Wade Sumpter and Cooper Shofner, 3.9, 3.9; 4. Monty Eakin, 4.0; 5. Seth Brockman, 4.1; 6. (tie) Trevor Knowles and Tyler McCormick, 4.2; 8. Clayton Hass, 4.4. Second round leaders: 1. Jacob Shofner, 3.5 seconds; 2. Cole Edge, 3.6; 3. (tie) Tyke Kipp and Cooper Shofner, 3.7; 5. Dakota Eldridge, 4.0; 6. Stan Branco, 4.1; 7. Trell Etbauer, 4.2; 8. (tie) Billy Bugenig and Tim Robinson, 4.3. Average leaders: 1. Cooper Shofner, 7.6 seconds on two runs; 2. (tie) Seth Brockman and Trevor Knowles, 8.6; 4. Dakota Eldridge, 8.7; 5. (tie) Billy Bugenig and Jacob Shofner, 8.8; 7. Cole Fulton, 9.1; 8. Wade Sumpter.

Tie-down roping: First round leaders: 1. (tie) Riley Pruitt and Ryan Jarrett, 8.2 seconds; 3. Tuf Cooper, 8.9; 4. J.D. Kibbe, 9.1; 5. Bradley Bynum, 9.6; 6. Connor Brice Hall, 9.8; 7. (tie) Trell Etbauer and Cody McCartney, 10.0. Second round leaders: 1. Blaine Cox, 8.6 seconds; 2. Jordan Ketscher, 9.3; 3. Kooper Saiz, 9.4; 4. Timber Moore, 9.6; 5. Travis Lewis, 10.1; 6. Ryle Smith, 10.2; 7. Wacey Walraven, 11.0; 8. Riley Pruitt, 12.1. Average leaders: 1. Blaine Cox, 19.0 seconds on two runs; 2. Riley Pruitt, 20.3; 3. Ryle Smith, 20.8; 4. Rowdy Haferkamp, 23.3; 5. Travis Lewis, 23.3; 6. Trell Etbauer, 25.5; 7. Timber Moore, 26.6; 8. Clint Cooper, 30.7.

Saddle bronc riding leaders: 1. 2. Cort Scheer, 86 points on Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s Showgirl; 2. Isaac Diaz, 83; 3. (tie) Allen Boore and Jesse James Kirby, 82; 5. Tyrel Larsen, 81; 6. Tyler Corrington, 79; 7. (tie) Clay Elliott, Zeke Thurston, Brandon Biebelle and Layton Green, 75.

Steer roping: Third round leaders: 1. Shay Good, 10.1 seconds; 2. Chet Herren, 12.1; 3. JoJo LeMond, 12.5; 4. (tie) Neal Wood and Guy Allen, 12.6; 6. Corey Ross, 13.5. Average leaders: 1. Cody Lee, 41.5 seconds on three runs; 2. Brodie Poppino, 41.7; 3. Guy Allen, 42.0; 4. Troy Tillard, 43.1; 5. Chet Herren, 44.3; 6. Corey Ross, 57.3.

Team roping: First round leaders: 1. Chad Masters/Travis Graves, 5.4 seconds; 2. Nate Singletary/Tom Bill Johnson, 5.8; 3. JoJo LeMond/Dakota Kirchenschlager, 5.9; 4. Justin Davis/Trey Johnson, 6.3; 5. (tie) Edward Hawley Jr./Ty Romo and Matt Sherwood/Quinn Kesler, 6.8; 7. Ethan Shelley/Corban Livingston, 7.2; 8. (tie) Billy Bob Brown/Garrett Jess and Luke Brown/Kollin VonAhn, 10.8. Second round leaders: 1. Trevor Brazile/Patrick Smith, 4.7 seconds; 2. (tie) JoJo LeMond/Dakota Kirchenschlager, Chad Masters/Travis Graves, Joel Bach/Jim Ross Cooper and Aaron Macy/Chad Williams, 4.8; 6. Edward Hawley Jr./Ty Romo, 5.0; 7. Luke Brown/Kollin VonAhn, 5.1; 8. Coleman Proctor/Jake Long, 5.3. Average leaders: 1. Chad Masters/Travis Graves, 10.2 seconds on two runs; 2. JoJo LeMond/Dakota Kirchenschlager, 10.7; 3. Edward Hawley Jr./Ty Romo, 11.8; 4. Justin Davis/Trey Johnson, 13.1; 5. Ethan Shelley/Corban Livingston, 14.0; 6. (tie) Luke Brown/Kollin VonAhn and Joel Bach/Jim Ross Cooper, 15.9; 8. Matt Sherwood, 17.9.

Barrel racing leaders: 1. Jessica Frost, 17.74 seconds; 2. Michelle Lummus, 17.87; 3. Paige Conrado, 17.91; 4. Shy-Anne Jarrett, 17.89; 5. Kenna Squires, 17.95; 6. Ivy Conrado, 18.12; 7. Dawn Lewis, 17.97; 8. Calyssa Thomas, 18.63; 9. Fonda Galbreath, 20.37; 10. Sydni Blanchard, 23.16.

Bull riding leaders: 1. Sage Kimzey, 84 points on Salt River Rodeo’s Fireball; 2. (tie) Bayle Worden and Casey Huckabee, 82; 4. Corey Granger, 78; 5. Tanner Learmont, 75; 6. McKennon Wimberly, 69; no other qualified rides.


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