Writer: D'Lyn Ford
LAS CRUCES - New Mexico State University's women's rodeo team and roping talent emerged as winners in a chilly competition March 29 in Window Rock, Ariz.
Strong performances from Leah Stevenson, Mandy Sproul, Misti Fudge and Tori Koyle added up to another win for the women's team, which is No. 1 in both the regional and national standings.
In breakaway roping, Stevenson won the average after sweeping the long and short goes with times of 3 and 4.5 seconds, respectively.
In goat tying, Stevenson won the long go with an 8.6, and Fudge was tied for fourth with a 9.6. Sproul won the average with a 7.8 in the short go. Koyle was second in the short go with an 8.8
Sproul finished second in the barrel racing average after posting a second-place time of 17.02 in the long go and tying for first in the short go with a16.96.
The men's team, which has won five of seven rodeos this season, finished second.
"I'm not sure what happened in the rough stock events," said rodeo coach Jim Dewey Brown. "Very few competitors posted scores."
NMSU's Clay Snure, the nation's top-ranked calf roper in the latest collegiate standings, won the average after taking first in the long go with a time of 9.6 seconds and third in the short go with a 12.2. Dylan Salvo was third in the long go with a 10.9. John Pete Etcheverry was fourth in the short go with a 12.7.
Team ropers also finished strong. In the long go, Etcheverry and Aaron Thomas were first with a 6.1; Dylan Salvo and Cooper Wimberly were third with a 6.6; and Buddy Robinson and Etcheverry were fourth with a 6.9.
In the short go, Sproul and Snure were first with a 5.9. Etcheverry and Robinson, who were among three teams tied for second with a 6.1, won the average.
Both teams lead the regional standings by a sizable margin going into the final regular season rodeo April 4-5 at the Southern New Mexico Fairgrounds. The NMSU men's team is ranked ninth in the latest national standings.
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