TORRINGTON – For the second straight season, the Eastern Wyoming College Lady Lancer rodeo team is headed to the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper.
The CNFR kicks off Sunday, June 9 afternoon at 1 p.m. at the Casper Events Center.
The EWC rodeo program is taking five competitors – three women and two men – to the season-ending event.
Sophomores Jacey Thompson, Karissa Rayhill and Brooke Glass head to the CNFR with their eyes on a top 10 finish.
“Our chances are going to be good to have a top 10 team,” EWC coach Jake Clark said. “I’m excited to watch them compete. I’m looking forward to a really fun week.”
Thompson and Rayhill qualified in both breakaway roping and goat tying, while Glass will complete in only breakaway roping.
“They are heading up Thursday to help prepare the goats and calves, and to get their horses into the arena. There is a lot of pre-stuff that goes on up there. Check-in is on Saturday and we’ll start competing Sunday,” Clark said. “All three of our breakaway ropers will compete in the first round on Sunday afternoon during their matinees.”
In addition to the trio of women, two men will also head north to Casper.
Freshman Chadron Coffield heads to the CNFR as the Central Rocky Mountain tie-down roping champion.
“He had a great year as a freshman,” Clark said. “He’s a great competitor. He should have a good showing up there.”
Meanwhile, sophomore Braden Pirrung is a late addition to the CNFR for the Lancers and will make his second appearance in Casper, as a team roper.
“He was an alternate in team roping, but due to some circumstances of another student from another school, he gets to go now,” Clark said. “He was really excited about that phone call.”
Clark always looks forward to this weekend when schools from 10 other regions converge on Casper.
“It’s a great rodeo to watch, and a great rodeo to be a coach at. It’s an honor to get to go back there again. The city of Casper and the state of Wyoming just do a phenomenal job of hosting this event and giving these students this opportunity,” Clark said. “It’s all about competing and winning a national title but enjoying the week while you are there.”
The CNFR begins at 1 p.m. Sunday, June 9 and wraps up Saturday, June 15 at 7 p.m. with the championship go-round.
“As for a rodeo competitor, of course you are on a big stage, but you have to wipe that out and focus on your event and competing,” Clark said. “Most of your good competitors will have tunnel vision and focus on that only. You have to remember what got you there and keep doing that.”