ALVA, Okla. – Momentum is a major factor in any team’s success.
The Northwestern Oklahoma State University women’s rodeo team proved that with a dominating performance this past weekend at the Southwestern Oklahoma State University rodeo in Weatherford. In doing so, the Rangers leaped over Southwestern and into the No. 1 spot in the Central Plains Region standings.
“We’re pretty stacked,” goat-tying winner Laremi Allred said of number of talented members on the Rangers team. “We’re especially stacked in goat-tying. When we’re on, we’re on, and you can count on us all coming back to the short-go. When we’re coming back with three or four of us cheering each other on, that’s really nice.”
That happened in Weatherford. Shayna Miller of Faith, S.D., won the opening round and was the top Northwestern cowgirl among four that competed in the finale, joined by Allred of Kanarraville, Utah; and Katy Miller and Tearnee Nelson, both of Faith.
While Shayna Miller won the long round with a 7.1-second run, Katy Miller and Allred were 7.5 to finish in a three-way-tie for third place. Allred then sped to a 7.3-second finish to win the short round, followed by Katy Miller’s 7.6 to finish second. Allred’s cumulative time of 14.8 seconds on two runs earned her the title and the bulk of the points, while Katy Miller was second overall. Shayna Miller was fourth, and Nelson finished in a tie for fifth place.
“My horse worked really well,” Allred said. “In the long go, I had a little pause when I got to my goat, but it was a good run. I knew I needed to fix that little pause. In the short-go, my horse worked outstanding.”
That horse is Flax, a 22-year-old sorrel gelding with flaxen main and tail. He’s been used in team roping and steer wrestling, and Allred uses him as her breakaway-roping and goat-tying horse.
“I got him as a graduation present from my grandpa, who passed away from cancer that year,” she said. “I really love him, and he fits me perfect. He’s really special because he is from my grandpa.
“My uncle owned him before me. We raised him, and my uncle bulldogged on him and won the ProRodeo in Pendleton (Ore.) on him.”
A horse of that magnitude is beneficial in rodeo, and the Northwestern men and women have stalls full of great ones. Take Shayna Miller, who capitalized on her solid performance in goat-tying while also doing well in breakaway. She finished second overall in that event and won the all-around title in Weatherford.
Teammate Sami McGuire of Backus, Minn., won the breakaway roping title with a two-run cumulative time of 6.4 seconds. Shayna Miller’s 6.9 earned the runner-up spot. Teammate Ashton Johnson of Benton, Iowa, finished in a tie for sixth overall. Barrel racer Sara Bynum of Beggs, Okla., finished fifth in her discipline.
The men, who finished third at the Southwestern rodeo, were led by steer wrestler Jacob Edler of State Center, Iowa, who placed in both rounds; his 5.7-second opening-round run finished third, and his 5.5 earned him the short-round title and the average championship. Teammate Maverick Harper of Stephenville, Texas, was 5.5 to share first place in the long round, then held on for sixth place overall. They were joined in the final round by Tyrell Kline of Hennessey, Okla., who finished in a two-way tie for third in the opening round.
Tie-down roper Chase Lako of Hunter, N.D., utilized a fast 8.7-second run on the final day to win both the short round and the average with a two-run cumulative time of 18.6 seconds. Bryson Seachrist of Apache, Okla., placed third in the long round, short round and average. Bareback rider Austin Graham of Jay, Okla., won the first round but failed to mark a score in the finale.
While Northwestern leads the women’s standings, the Rangers men sit third and will need to put together solid performances during the final two weekends of the season if they hope to earn a team spot in the College National Finals Rodeo. The teams will compete in Hays, Kan., this coming weekend, then will close out the season the final weekend of April in Guymon, Okla.
Individually, contestants must finish among the top three in their respective events if they hope to compete at Casper, Wyo., in June.
“The goals I made were making seven out of 10 short-goes this year, and I’ve made six so far,” Allred said. “My other goal is to finish in the top three in goat-tying, and I’m fourth right now and within reach of getting into the top three.
“Now that we’ve moved up in the team standings, I think it would be really cool if we could win the team deal. If we have a weekend like we just did, we’ll be fine. I think we should go ahead and win this thing since it’s this close. I don’t think that would be unreasonable.”