Friday, September 8, 2017

NMSU Rodeo Team prepares for upcoming season with 22 new athletes.

NMSU Rodeo Team prepares for upcoming season with 22 new athletes. DATE: 09/08/2017 WRITER: Savannah Montero, 575-646-3223, smontero@nmsu.edu CONTACT: Logan Corbett, 270-293-9242, lcorbett@nmsu.edu The New Mexico State Rodeo Team’s season is going to start out with a boom, during the month of September and beginning of October, having four rodeos. Twenty-two freshmen and transfers were recruited over spring and summer coming from various states and one even from Canada. Starting Sept. 15 and 16 rodeos will begin in Tsaile, Arizona. The following rodeo will be held in Douglas, Arizona, during the weekend of Sept. 22 and 23. On Thursday and Friday, Sept. 28 and 29, an event will be held at the Las Cruces fairgrounds, where the Aggies will compete on their home base. The last rodeo for the fall season will be in Tucumcari Oct. 13 and 14. “I have high expectations for our team this year,” said NMSU Rodeo Coach Logan Corbett. “We graduated quite a few key players on our team last year and so we had to do a lot of recruiting. I’m excited for this year’s team.” Last year the women’s team won the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association’s Grand Canyon Region (Arizona and New Mexico) and the men’s team placed second overall. Out of the 22 new athletes, Corbett added 15 new bull, bareback and saddle bronc riders to the team. This is outstanding for the region due to the lack of rough stock riders during the past year. Last year on the team there was only one bareback rider, five saddle bronc riders and three bull riders. “What made me want to come down to NMSU from Canada was hearing about all of the positives about this rodeo team and about the school itself,” said Chad Hartman, freshman bull rider at NMSU. “The team also has the best coach if you want to succeed and make your dreams a reality.” The group also recruited a very competitive transfer student from Cochise College: junior Hayley Dalton-Estes. She competes in three events: goat tying, breakaway roping and team roping. She won the goat tying title for the Grand Canyon Region and was second overall in the breakaway roping last year, along with qualifying for the College National Finals Rodeo held at Casper, Wyoming, in two of her three events. Corbett has high expectations for the senior rodeo competitors as well. “I expect that the senior team members will be role models for the underclassmen,” Corbett said. “With three years of experience traveling to rodeos, and only one year left, seniors typically realize that this is it, and they buckle down and compete really well.” He hopes that his freshmen will understand how fast their four years will go by and that these athletes put in a full 100 percent. Every practice is critical along with every rodeo; it is necessary to work hard in order to qualify for the College National Finals. Zoe Billings, NMSU senior rodeo athlete, set her goals for the upcoming season. “I’m making my goals more about what needs to be done for success rather than about placing,” she said. “My goals are to not break any roping barriers and to keep all of my goats down.” Another new freshman barrel racer, Clay Barry, came all the way from Kennewick, Washington, to rodeo for New Mexico State. This women’s team athlete has a very interesting story. “I’m thrilled to have this opportunity to meet new people and see what the future has in store for me at NMSU,” Barry said. “I started a church back home called ‘The Ride of Faith Church’ and I am excited to bring it not only to NMSU and this region, but to the different rodeo communities that surround the area and see where God takes it.” Corbett said the Aggie Rodeo Team members are ready for an unforgettable rodeo season. For more information, go to http://aces.nmsu.edu/rodeo/. - 30 - Follow NMSU News on Twitter: http://twitter.com/nmsunews Follow NMSU News on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NMSUNews

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