Vikings stall in second round
CASPER, Wyo. -- The Missouri Valley College rodeo team saw little to bolster its spirits during the second and third days of the 71st College National Finals Rodeo at Casper, Wyo.
The Valley men's squad added only 30 points to its team tally, falling from a tie for sixth place to 28th place with 95 points after the first two of three long go-rounds. The Lady Vikings notched their only 25 points and share 28th place.
The only Valley cowboy to score thus far is sophomore Jesse Pope of Waverly, Kan., in bareback riding. After tying for second place in the first round, Pope split fifth place with two other contestants with a score of 75.5 points Monday. He is in contention for a spot in Saturday's championship performance, tied for ninth place in a battle for a top-12 position.
Neither senior Briar Dittmer nor junior Shannon Warren were able to complete their second rides. Although both qualify in the all-around category, neither had yet to put up points to get them into the hunt -- with no-scores during the second go in saddle bronc riding. Their last chances in both events will be Wednesday for Dittmer and Friday for Warren.
Junior Trey Watts of Williamsport, Pa., remained alive in saddle bronc with a second-round score of 69.5 -- giving him a two-round average of 140 points for 20th place. His final preliminary round will be Thursday.
Freshman Kolten Achenbach came up empty in his second bull ride, the same as the first, but sophomore Roy Lee of Benton, Ark., was solid in his first two goals in tie-down roping -- with a 14.0-second time Monday followed by a 13.0 Tuesday to put him in 26th place heading into his final long "go" Wednesday.
The Vikings' three steer wrestlers completed their first two rounds, with only junior Connor Gentry of Pleasanton, Kan., posting times with an 8.2 Monday and Tuesday's 4.7 -- good for 10th place in the round. His average is 12.9 heading into the third round Thursday. Meanwhile, senior Ben Kilburg and sophomore Austin Schneider are yet to post times after two gos.
The MVC women got on the board Tuesday as junior Fallon Dyer of Ottawa, Kan., split fifth place three ways with a time of 2.5 second in the second go of breakaway roping -- after not recording a time during her first attempt.
Dyer had times of 8.2 and 8.1 seconds in her first two rounds of goat tying, putting her in 39th place going into her final long-go Wednesday. Sophomore Cara Hilzendeger had a no-time and 6.6 in her first two attempts, completing her prelims late Tuesday with a 9.2 for a 15.2 average -- knocking her out of the short go.
Freshman Haley Jones opened in barrel racing with a time of 20.09 seconds Monday, following that up with a 15.01-second ride Tuesday. She wraps up the long go Thursday, entering the round in 43rd place.
The third preliminary round is spread over the next three days, leading up to the championship performance Saturday evening.
Contact Chris Allen/Democrat-News