OPSU Rodeo Conquers Weather, Competition Submitted by OPSU Rodeo on 02/25/2013 Manhattan, Kan.—As old man winter bore down on the central portion of the country, the Oklahoma Panhandle State University Rodeo team drove across snow-packed roads and endured inches of precipitation in order to compete at the Kansas State University Rodeo February 22-24.
In order to get as many contestants as possible from across the Central Plains Region to Manhattan safely, the rodeo experienced a few changes to its regular schedule. The slack for Friday morning was cancelled, pushing all events back and eliminating the short round. With only one round's worth of points to compete for, OPSU cowboys and cowgirls spurred, roped and rode to be the best of their abilities.
"Not rain, not sleet, not snow will stop Panhandle Rodeo," Coach Craig Latham said.
Jeff Bertus stayed in the middle of his bovine for eight seconds to claim the bull riding title for the weekend. His score of 76 topped the rest of the competition for the one-round rodeo.
Staying at the bucking chute end of the arena, the guys of OPSU made their legendary coaches proud in the saddle bronc riding. Jake Watson's 76-point ride slid him into second place. He was followed by a cluster of teammates. In third was Caleb Nichols, scoring 74 points. Allen Boore and Whit Peterson tied for fourth and fifth place with Bill Hammerness in sixth. In a tie for seventh and eighth was Joe Harper.
Adding to the men's team third place finish was Dusty Moore in the steer wrestling. His time of 6.7 seconds landed him in fourth. Brent Whipple also placed in the big man's event.
Kole Wynia and Watson also took fourth place in the team roping with a rapid 6.3-second run.
For the women, Alex Christen and Samantha Foos made consistent runs in the goat tying. Christen landed in the fifth/sixth place slot stopping the clock at 6.7 seconds. She was followed by her teammate in seventh.
The team will be back on the road to Garden City March 1-3 with hopes of more favorable weather conditions. As the rodeo season hits its halfway mark, competitors are aiming to claim their spot for the College National Finals Rodeo in June.