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Friday, April 29, 2011

SHSU women’s rodeo team headed to nationals

SHSU women’s rodeo team headed to nationals
By Brett Hoffman

WHARTON — Going into the final regular season rodeo this weekend, Sam Houston State’s women’s team has the regional title clinched and will advance to the College National Finals Rodeo.

In order to qualify for the June championships in Casper, Wyo., a team must finish in the top two in a region after 10 regular season shows.

Sam Houston competes in the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association Southern Region, which one of the college association’s tougher conferences. This weekend, This weekend, Sam Houston is scheduled to compete at the Wharton County Junior College Rodeo, the last of 10 shows that were scheduled for the 2010-11 season.

Sam Houston enters the Wharton rodeo ranked No. 1 with 2,984 points. McNeese State (second with 1,624), Texas A&M (third with 1,539) and Hill (fourth with 1,487), will attempt to gain a berth to the College National Finals by finishing No. 2 for the year.

Sam Houston’s women’s team of four includes Elizabeth Ann Combs, who has the regional barrel racing title all but clinched, and Brittany Boyd Grant, who is the region’s No. 2 barrel racer.

Sam Houston’s men also are in excellent position to gain a CNFR berth. They rank No. 2 with 3,757 points, 667 behind McNeese, which has 4,024 from nine rodeos.

Sam Houston will attempt to hold off third ranked Hill College (3,427) and fourth ranked Texas A&M (3,099) from coming in and taking a top two spot.

Sam Houston’s men’s team of six includes Cody Lee Teel, who ranks second in the Southern Region bull riding race, and Jeremy Ray Melancon, who is No. 2 in the regional saddle bronc riding standings.

Steer wrestler killed — The funeral for Reagon Walker, a Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association steer wrestler who died last weekend following a traffic accident near Jacksboro, was Tuesday in Ennis. Walker, 21, who was from Ennis, is the son of 1981 world champion Byron Walker.

Walker had been a PRCA member since just after his graduation from Ennis High in May 2008 and showed great potential. In 2010, for example, Walker won the Henderson County PRCA Stampede in Athens, in 3.5 seconds. He also finished in a tie for second at the Dodge Texas Circuit Finals Rodeo in Waco.

PBR update — On the Professional Bull Riders Built Ford Tough Series, Valdiron de Oliveira, a Brazilian who lives near Decatur, is ranked No. 1 with 7,403.75 points, 1,571 ahead of No. 2 Silvano Alves who has 5,832.75. This weekend the tour stops in Seattle.

Masters injured — Defending world team roping champion Chad Masters is expected to be sidelined until early June after breaking his left collarbone during a practice session. The accident occurred on April 14 at partner Jade Corkill’s home arena in Fallon, Nev. Masters, who had surgery on April 19, was injured when his horse fell while making a run.

During the 2009 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas, Masters and Corkhill won Round 9 with a time of 3.3 seconds, which is a PRCA team roping world record.

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