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Aggies Set the Stage for Round 10

Submitted by Kashly Schweer on 12/15/2018 Joe Frost (right) is all smiles as he pauses for a photo with former Panhandle State Rodeo Coach and one of Frost's biggest influences Craig Latham after his win in round 8 at the NFR. —Courtesy photo Joe Frost (right) is all smiles as he pauses for a photo with former Panhandle State Rodeo Coach and one of Frost's biggest influences Craig Latham after his win in round 8 at the NFR. —Courtesy photo

Las Vegas — The winning tradition of Oklahoma Panhandle State University’s Rodeo Team continues at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (WNFR) as five alumni climb the world standings in pursuit of the coveted gold buckles. Collective, Panhandle State alumni have claimed six round championships and $280,769.24 of prize money throughout nine nights of rodeo action. As the stage is set for the final round, these former Aggies will ride with the all-out style that coaches Craig Latham and Robert Etbauer have instilled in their athletes for years.

That approach has led bareback rider Orin Larsen to the pay window on horses that are deemed eliminators. Since round three, Larsen has been 87-points or higher four times and claimed the top spot in round seven with an 89-point ride aboard “Tip Off” of Frontier Rodeo. The Canadian cowboy is eighth in the aggregate with a total of 684.50 points on eight head and has climbed one spot in the world standings to third. Although he is an outside contender for the world title, Larsen has fought through a knee injury to earn $75,730.77 thus far.

In the saddle bronc riding, Cort Scheer has stolen the show with three go-round wins. After starting his WNFR with back-to-back wins in rounds one and two, the Nebraskan has proven he is a contender in that world championship race. Scheer has placed in six of the nine rounds, earning $101,173.08. After bucking off last night, Scheer has dropped to fifth in the aggregate; however, the top eight earn average money that is known for shaking up the final standings. The electric cowboy has jumped three spots in the world standings since getting to Vegas. He is currently sixth.

After barely missing the eight-second whistle last night, Elliott will be firing in the final round. He is matched with HiLo ProRodeo’s “Larry Culpepper”; a name that should be familiar to Aggie fans as Scheer broke the second round arena record on this stellar bronc with a 92-point ride earlier in the week. Also having an uncharacteristically quiet WNFR is Taos Muncy. The veteran saddle bronc rider has struggled to get things rolling his way but has drawn well-known bucking horse, “Lunatic From Hell” of Burch Rodeo, for his final ride inside the Thomas and Mack this year.

One of the biggest buzzes around Las Vegas is Joe Frost. He is known for his high riding percentage, and this year’s WNFR has been no exception. Frost is second in the aggregate with 436.50 points on five head. He has been on the South Point stage for the two buckle presentations after winning rounds two and eight. After cashing $83,980.77 in the first nine rounds, Frost leaped nine spots in the world standings to fourth place.

The tenth round is always full of suspense and dramatic endings as the best in the rodeo industry battle for the championship gold buckles. Don’t miss a minute of the action by tuning to CBS Sports Network at 9 p.m. CST. Viewers can also catch the final performance by subscribing at prorodeotv.com. Derek Barton has interviews with all your favorites at nfr.opsu.edu.


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