POCATELLO – In 2018, Pete Bradshaw was the only cowboy to post a score in the first go-round of the bull riding event. Things haven’t gotten much better, whether it is because of nerves, high expectations or the bulls were just tougher than the cowboys.
Only two cowboys have managed to post scores in the first go-round this season, District 4 cowboy Wyatt Remington, the district champion, and Carson Simper, who hails from District 5. Remington posted a score of 77 to take the top spot for the first go-round and Simper had a 64 to claim the second spot. The other 25 riders failed to make the eight second count and received 0 points for their time and effort.
Traditionally, bull riding is a tough sport and the stock contractors have brought some of their best bulls in for the Idaho State High School Rodeo Finals and this year is no exception. Things will likely lighten up some and more bulls will be ridden, but only time will tell.
The other rough stock events — bareback riding, saddle bronc riding and steer wrestling — haven’t exactly been easy for the cowboys.
Bareback riding has seen seven cowboys make the grade so far, out of the 19 who entered, led by Tyler Smith of District 2, who posted his score in the very first performance on Monday night. In fact, the top two scores have been posted by District 2 cowboys and both came in the first performance.
In the saddle bronc riding, Kade Bruno from District 1 posted a score of 72 during the first performance on Monday night and Bruin Bradshaw, from District 1 as well, was also riding on Monday night, currently holds down the second spot with a score of 69. In third is Cooper Cooke of District 7 with a score of 58.
Steer wrestling fared better, as the cowboys put the pedal to the metal and were getting hold of the steers quickly out of the chute. Cole Eiguren of District 2 took advantage of a quick start and posted a quick time of 4.280 seconds to claim the top spot after the first go-round. That earned him ten points towards a spot in the short go on Saturday. Dustin Thompson of District 6 stopped the timer in 4.730 seconds to claim second and Lan Larison of District 2 claimed the third spots with a time of 4.81 seconds. In all, 17 of the 38 cowboys who participated in the steer wrestling were able to post times and of course only the ten fastest earned points towards the short-go on Saturday.
Pole bending, the first of the timed events, saw two cowgirls post times below 21 seconds, as Haylee Pocock, the 48th to give the course a go and had to wait until the third performance, which took place on Tuesday night to show her talent. She stopped the timer in 20.553 to take the go round and just edge out Cassidy Corta for the top spot. Corta, who is from Distrcit 8, was the second to last cowgirl to make a run on the pole bending course and just missed the top spot with a time of 20.554 seconds. Pocock hails from District 7 so you can count on those two cowgirls to square off at least two more times before the short go on Saturday. In third place is Macardi Park from District 5 who posted her time of 21.122 early in the first performance on Monday night.
Kaylee Cornia didn’t waste much time in getting her time posted in the goat tying event. She stopped the timer at 7.130 seconds and did it in the first performance on Monday night. Zoie Bedke, from District 6 was also in the first performance on Monday and she stopped the timer in a quick 7.490 seconds to claim the second spot. In third is Paige Bennett, who was the fist cowgirl to give the course a test on Monday night and she hails from District 9.
Breakaway roping, with 55 contestants is a big favorite among the cowgirls and leading the way after the first go-round is Breyer Newman from District 4. She was the 16th and final contestant on Monday night and she posted a time of 2.970 seconds. Right behind is Gracie Faulkner of District 5 who posted her time of 2.990 seconds in the second performance on Tuesday morning and in third is Tayler Eiguren of District 2 who has a time of 3.000.
Barrel racing, also with 55 contestants involved, shows Miko Grubaugh from District 2 as the quickest cowgirl in Idaho in the early going of the State Finals. She stopped the timer in a quick 17.680 seconds to edge out Lindsey Peterson from District 9 who had a time of 17.688 seconds. In third is Cassidy Corta from District 8 who had a time of 17.703 seconds.
Team roping is always a tough event. Either all of the cowboys and cowgirls are on target and it becomes a shoot-out or the heelers seem to lag behind a bit. The latter seemed to be the case in the first go-round but Garet Jardine and Jackson Cummins seemed to have a grasp on what was needed as the pair posted a time of 6.940 seconds to hold the top spot. In second is the team of Brayden Roe and Blacke Craig from District 2 got their steer roped in 7.74 seconds and in third is the team of Jetta Bott and Cody Rowley from District 6 who had a time of 9.090 seconds.
In tie down roping, the top spot belongs to Brayden Roe from District 2 who caught his calf in a quick 8.46 seconds. Nick Chappell from District 4 was in second with a time of 9.250 seconds and Cole Eiguren of District 2 claimed the third spot with a time of 9.840 seconds.
Points in each event are awarded to the top 10 times or scores if there are that many, based upon a 10,126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.1 basis for each go-round. If there aren’t 10 qualified times or scores, then the remainder of the points are washed away. (In the case of the Bull Riding, there were only two qualified rides, so only 10 points were awarded to Remington and 9 points awarded to Simper).
Each go-round will continue to award points and then the average of the three go-rounds will also award points with the top average earning 15 and the points going down for 10 positions. Once a cowboy or cowgirl has posted a point total, then their placing in their district will kick in with additional points based upon where their finished in the final standings in that event during the district rodeos.
The short-go points will then be added in and the resulting total will decide the state champion.
It will all become much clearer after the second go-round as the events will begin to sort out who will likely make the short-go and earn additional points from their district runs and the average.