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UT Martin Spring Rodeo
By Ryne Rickman
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Martin, Tenn. April 12, 2015– Another successful University of Tennessee at Martin (UTM) spring college rodeo is in the books, as 16 teams from the Ozark Region completed the 47th annual rodeo April 9-11.
Of special interest, UTM Coach John Luthi was inducted into the UTM Rodeo Hall of Fame Thursday night. He was the National Coach of the Year in 2013 and his UTM Men's Team won the National Team Championship in 2014.
The UT Martin men’s team tied for third with 360 points, while the UT Martin women’s squad posted its season-high tally of 345 points, finishing in second place only 10 points behind winner Arkansas-Monticello. West Alabama won the men’s side with 620 points.
A pair of UT Martin cowboys earned points in bareback riding. Tanner Phipps split first and second in both average (153) and in the short go (77) after placing second in the first round with a 76. Colt Kitaif earned 72 points in the second round, which was good enough for a fifth-place finish.
Jacob Dagenhart contributed to the point total in calf roping, as his performance of 10.5 in the first round was the third-best time of the 10 cowboys in the event.
On the women’s side, a trio of UT Martin cowgirls amassed points in breakaway roping. Natalie Fletcher earned second place finishes in average (14.8), the first round (2.6) and in the second round (12.2). Kaytlyn Franklin and Megan Crow each posted identical scores of 3.3 in the first round, which split fifth in that round and split sixth in average.
In steer wrestling, Tucker Kail finished fourth with a 12.8 average after his 4.4 performance in the short go was the top time in the event. Slade Bronson placed fifth in both average (14.4) and in the second round (6.2) while Lane Mitchell split second in the first round (5.0) and split sixth in average (5.0 on 1).
Micayla Gray secured points in all three phases of goat tying. She placed third in average (13.8), third in the short go (6.7) and fifth in the opening round (7.1).
Two UT Martin teams racked up points in team roping, as the duo of Savannah Warner and Vann Figgeroa finished fifth in both the average (25.8) and in the second round (17.3). The team of Dagenhart and Zack Mabry performed well early, placing second with a time of 6.3 in the first go.
The women’s squad boasted four cowgirls who amassed points in barrel racing. Dacia Horne led all competitors with a 28.07 average after placing first in the opening round (14.02) and second in the short go (14.05). Nealey Dalton finished second with a 28.19 average after a first-place effort in the short go (13.99) and splitting second in the first round (14.2). Ashley Brooks placed sixth in average (29.09) and in the first go (14.49) while Kayla Edmondson tallied a fourth place time in the short go (14.49).
Heath Simpson rounded out the scoring for the men’s team when his 71 points in the first round of bull riding split third and split second in average.
UT Martin continues its spring schedule when it travels to Arkansas-Monticello April 16-18.
(Photos by Nathan Morgan/UT Martin University Relations)
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