CLARENDON, Texas – A quartet of Clarendon College saddle bronc riders made a big statement this past weekend at the Vernon (Texas) College rodeo.
The top four men were all Clarendon College cowboys, and they were a key reason why the Bulldogs won the men’s team title at Vernon.
“We had another good weekend,” said Bret Franks, the rodeo team’s coach. “I’d say those four were on top of their game and made the most difference for us. It was good to see how well we competed.”
Weston Patterson of Waverly, Kansas, led the way for the Bulldogs, placing third in the opening round with an 81-point ride, then winning the championship round with an 85 to clinch the average with a cumulative score166 points. He finished just ahead of teammates Dylan Hancock of Golconda, Illinois, and Slade Keith of Stanfield, Arizona, both of whom placed in both rounds and finished tied for second in the aggregate with 163 points on two rides – Keith won the first round with an 84.
Fellow bronc buster Reno McGill of Gardnerville, Nevada, finished fourth in the short round with an 82.5-point ride and placed fourth overall.
“We scored 450 points as a team to win the title, and we got 380 points in bronc riding,” Franks said. “If we didn’t get any other points along the way, we still would have won the rodeo because of the points we got in bronc riding.”
That’s a powerful statement, but it’s proof of the dominant showing the Bulldogs put on in rodeo’s classic event.
Patterson also added points by placing fifth in the long round of bareback riding, while Sam Petersen of Helena, Montana, placed in both the final round and the aggregate. Clarendon team ropers Clay Freeman of Wickenburg, Arizona, and Hayden Bass of Plainview, Texas, placed fourth in the opening round.
With the victory, Clarendon College moves into second place in the Southwest Region’s men’s standings. The Bulldogs supplanted Tarleton State University in the race for the regional title and made up ground on the leader, Western Texas College, with six events remaining on the 2022-23 calendar.
For the Clarendon College women, barrel racer Quincy Sullivan of Peralta, New Mexico, placed in both go-rounds of barrel racing. Her 17.16-second run in the championship round was the second-fastest of the weekend, which was also good enough to help her to a second-place finish in the round and move up to third place in the aggregate.
“There are some things we’ll continue to work on, but I like the direction we’re heading,” Franks said. “It’s nice to move up the standings at each rodeo, but our main goal is to finish the season with the regional title.”