**For Immediate Release**
Almost Drowned, but Not Out
Another Success for the OPSU Rodeo Team
- released by OPSU Campus Communications 04-16-2007
by Whitney Harding
Goodwell, Okla. — It was another rainy weekend for all who attended the Southwestern Oklahoma State University rodeo in Weatherford, Oklahoma this past Thursday, Friday and Saturday, but despite the wind, rain and snow, Oklahoma Panhandle State’s rodeo team showed that their spirits couldn’t be dampened - even if their saddle blankets were.
With the red mud splattered over every cowboy and cowgirl at the rodeo, both OPSU’s men’s and women’s teams proved they weren’t afraid to get a little dirty. On the women’s side of things, both Kelly Koeppen and Kendel Fawcett made their way back to the short go in the goat tying with times of a 9.2 and a 9.8, respectively. Koeppen heated things up in the short round coming out on top of the round with a 7.9 second run; practically magic considering the soupy ground and arena conditions. Kelly ended up second in the average. Chancy Harrington was the only one to make it back in the breakaway roping event with a time of 4.1 in the long go. As for the barrel racing, Laura Heaton was the lone wolf once again, and ended up second in the average, as well as coming out with a check for second place in the long go and fifth in the short.
As for men’s side of things, OPSU once again showed their dominance in the saddle bronc event bringing back six OPSU boys to the short go. Shank Stevens, Trell Etbauer, Ryan Bestol, Taos Muncy, Mike Murphy, and Rob McGilvray all saw some action in the arena in the Saturday night short-go performance, but it was Etbauer, Stevens and Bestol who walked away with the first, second and third place checks for the average. The bareback riding got interesting as Brian Leddy made it back with a score of 66 points, and bettered his score in the short-go, coming out with a score of 77 which placed him third in the average. In the calf roping event, Etbauer once again proved his all-around ability winning the average, the long-go and placing second in the short go. Although our New Mexico cowboy Taos Muncy made it back in both the saddle bronc and the bull riding, he wasn’t able to attend the short go due to a quick trip to San Francisco for another rodeo. Muncy had been fourth in the bull riding in the long-go.
From a team standpoint, the men came out second, falling 50 points shy of first place team Northwestern Oklahoma State University. As for the women, they split second and third place in the team standings falling behind Fort Hays State University by 60 points, but remaining even with their rivals from Northwestern State University. To top the weekend off Trell Etbauer walked away with the All-Around title and a trophy saddle.
Although the weather made the weekend fairly wet and uncomfortable, the men and women of Oklahoma Panhandle State shone through, keeping their positions in the standings and ensuring the possibility of a trip to Casper, Wyoming for the College Finals. With the season winding down and only two more rodeos left to go, OPSU’s rodeo team looks to be in good shape. Two more wins and some good weather is all that we can hope for in the next couple of weeks. So pat your rodeo team members on the back this week and let them know you’re behind them. With any luck, the Aggies will be off to the CNFR in no time.