OPSU Men Win Hometown Rodeo Submitted by OPSU Rodeo on 04/30/2013 Guymon, Okla.—The Hitch Pioneer Arena was filled with top quality talent during a beautiful weekend for Oklahoma Panhandle State University's Doc Gardner Memorial Rodeo, and the stakes were high and the competition strong. Many hardworking individuals strived hard to produce the annual event, and it was named Rodeo of the Year for the Central Plains Region.
The OPSU men almost pulled an upset for the regional title by dominating the competition this weekend and winning the rodeo, but came up short by a mere 84 points to finish second in the region to Ft. Scott. The team will still be heading to Casper this June, however, to compete at the College National Finals looking to capture another National Championship.
Among the team members, top standout sophomore Joe Frost captured the All-Around title at the Doc Gardner Memorial Rodeo as well as the regional title. With consistency playing a key factor in his climb to the top, Frost also finished as the number one cowboy for the bull riding in the region.
Frost stated, "As a freshman I set the goal to win four regional all-around titles and this is two for two."
On Saturday afternoon in the championship round, Frost competed in the calf roping, steer wrestling and bull riding. He gathered a few points in the calf roping, finished second in the steer wrestling with a 5.7-second run in the first round and a 4.8 in the final round, and placed third in the bull riding. Defeating the unridden bull of 545 belonging to McCloy Rodeo, Frost marked the highest ride of the weekend at an 81, sealing his all-around titles.
In the saddle bronc riding competition, newly crowned Central Plains Region Champion senior Allen Boore spurred his way to victory on Saturday afternoon on McCloy Rodeo's horse Bald Hornet. With a 79 in both the first round and short go, Boore captured his second consecutive Doc Gardner championship buckle, taking a larger lead in the regional standings and finishing well above the rest by almost 200 points.
"Guymon has treated me very well two years in a row. I'm just tickled to be able to win it again. Winning the region was one of my goals this past year, and I'm happy with how it ended. Being a senior and my last year to college rodeo, I am pretty excited to leave on top," Boore said. His wife, Katie Boore, who videoed for the team at every rodeo, couldn't agree more.
Shade Etbauer, Clay Elliot, and Jake Watson were able to gather up some points for the team in the bronc riding as well. Watson won the first round with an 81-point score on Sippin' Whiskey of McCloy's; Caleb Nichols, Whit Peterson, and Joe Harper also competed in the short round of the saddle bronc riding. OPSU championship round qualifiers also included Dusty Moore and Clay Elliot in the team roping, Jacob Willems in the bareback riding, and Jeff Bertus in the bull riding.
As for the women, Samantha Wilson and Alex Micek collected some points, finishing fourth and fifth consecutively in the average of the breakaway roping; Wilson with 2.9 seconds in the first round and a 3.1 in the final round, and Micek with a 3.2 in the first go and a 2.9 in the short go. In the goat tying, senior Chaney Latham tied two down with an 8.5 in the first round and an 8.6 in the short round to finish fourth overall. In the barrel racing, Kashli Arfsten finished with a few points with her fastest run, of 17.81 seconds in the final round.
A "Winning Tradition" describes the heart and soul of the Oklahoma Panhandle State University Rodeo Team. Hard work, try, and overall determination runs fully through the veins of the individuals on the team and everyone involved. With the support and guidance of the coaches, Craig Latham and Robert Etbauer, the "Winning Tradition" continues.
Coaches shape a team, and it's not hard to see that the OPSU Rodeo Team has two of the best in the business. Last year, Coach Latham was voted Coach of the Year and this year Robert Etbauer takes that honor. There are around six hundred individuals in the region, and as a whole everyone votes for which coach in the region receives this prestigious honor.
"I had a lot of help; Craig, my wife Sue, and all my kids. Thanks to the community for all the support," Etbauer simply stated.
Etbauer not only came away with the Coach of the Year honor, but his horse Rambo, used in the tie down roping, steer wrestling, goat tying, and team roping was named Horse of the Year for the second year in a row as well. Both man and horse deserve both honors.
The family of the OPSU Rodeo team graciously thanks everyone, the community, sponsors, and so many others that helped make the Doc Gardner Memorial Rodeo into the Best Rodeo of the Region once again. The team and many individuals had much success.
"I am proud of every one of the kids, everyone kept getting better, and I am impressed with the improvement. I'm just happy to have a shot at another national title," Coach Latham beamed.