Western rodeo team opens strong

DILLON — The University of Montana Western men’s and women’s rodeo teams traveled to Bozeman for the start of their spring season. Two consecutive rodeos were held on Thursday, April 4 through Saturday the 6th and another on Sunday, April 7.

The women’s team got the victory in both rodeos, led by Megan Crist with back-to-back women’s all-around titles. The men were second in the first rodeo and finished strong on Sunday with men’s all-around champion Luke Gee guiding them to a win.

In the first rodeo, Philip Shields picked up 240 points (third) in the men’s all-around. He placed first in bull riding (98 points) and third in saddle bronc riding (71 points). Luke Gee placed fourth in the all-around with 170 points. He also placed second in bull riding (67 points) and fifth in steer wrestling (19.2 seconds). Kody Lahaye’s 60 points put him in ninth in the all-around. He picked up a sixth-place finish in tie down roping (10.6 seconds) and eighth in steer wrestling (26.7 seconds).

In saddle bronc riding, Douglas Hall finished with 94 points (third) while Tanner Denton had 70 points (fourth). Chase Redfield’s 117 points were good for seventh in bareback riding.

Jade Gardner picked up an eighth-place finish in tie down roping (11.6 seconds). In steer wrestling, Quincey Rasmussen was fourth with a time of 16.3 while Michael Vines was sixth with 18.7 seconds.

Payson Munns was the runner-up in team roping while Dalton Tamcke, Dane Andreasen and Charles Briggs went fourth, fifth and sixth.

Megan Crist won the women’s all-around with her 480 points and a 175-point margin over second place. She won the breakaway roping with 5.5 seconds, the goat tying with 15.1 seconds and finished second in team roping.

Hannah Sharon picked up second place in barrel racing (30.4 seconds) while Jody Gilson was seventh (35.78 seconds). In breakaway roping, Maegan Nahrgang was second while Justinn Marshall was eighth.

In the second rodeo, Montana Western swept the team and all-around titles. The men’s 556.66 points beat second-place Montana State University (MSU) by almost 50 points while the women’s 422.83 was 80 points over the runner-up, which was also MSU.

Luke Gee, who traveled to and from Oklahoma City to simultaneously participate in the Dodge National Circuit Finals, won the men’s all-around with 252 points. He was second in bull riding (70 points) and in steer wrestling (5.2 seconds).

Following Gee was Colt Gardner in fourth (92.33), Payson Munns in sixth (54.33) and Jade Gardner in seventh (17.33). Colt Gardner was fourth in tie down roping (13 seconds) while Munns was sixth (17.7) and Jade Gardner was eighth (22.2). Colt and Jade Gardner finished tied in eighth in team roping along with Munns.

Philip Shields won bull riding with 83 points. Chase Redfield finished in fourth in bareback riding (71 points) while Michael Vines was sixth in steer wrestling (6.3 seconds).

Parker Bignell and Kolby Bignell finished fourth in team roping while Jesse Medearis and Nicholas Xeros were seventh.

Women’s all-around champion Megan Crist was first in goat tying (7.8 seconds), third in breakaway roping (3.3 seconds) and eighth in team roping. Maegan Nahrgang and Carol Peabody clinched second in team roping. Haily Hamlin tied for first in breakaway roping (3.1 seconds) while Hannah Sharon was sixth in barrel racing (15.42 seconds).

Both men’s and women’s teams remain in second place in the regional standings. Montana State men have 4,551 points followed by the Bulldogs with 3,360.16. On the women’s side, the Bulldogs trail MSU 2,437.91 to 2,508.5.

Gee remains in first place in bull riding (536 points), followed by Philip Shields (450 points) while Jade Gardner is on top in tie down roping (508 points). As a team roping heeler, Colton Sargent leads the pack with 413 points.

Haily Hamlin is leading breakaway roping with 635.5 points followed by Megan Crist with 268. Crist took the lead in goat tying (785) while Justinn Marshall sits in fifth (400).

The Bulldogs will travel to Glendive for their next rodeo, which is Friday through Sunday at Dawson Community College.

— Montana Western Sports Information