EWC to host Lancer Rodeo this weekend
TORRINGTON – Several hundred of the top rodeo competitors from the Central Rocky Mountain Region will converge on the Goshen County Fairgrounds Pavilion this weekend for the annual Lancer Rodeo.
It is the only time the EWC will have the “home court advantage” this year.
Teams from EWC, the University of Wyoming, Casper College, Laramie County Community College, Central Wyoming College, Sheridan College, Gillette College, Chadron State College, Otero Junior College, Northeastern Junior College and Lamar Community College look to take the next step towards qualifying for the College National Finals Rodeo in June.
The Lancer teams have had an up and down year dating back to when the season started in the fall.
“We had some good rodeos, and we had some bad rodeos,” first-year coach Whit Peterson said. “Last weekend was about the same. We had some ups and downs.”
Eastern Wyoming had four competitors make the Sunday’s short round in the spring season opener in Gillette, and Peterson hopes to build off last week’s results.
Peterson and the rest of the team hopes to improve upon that this weekend at home and utilize the “home court advantage.”
“We come here every day. We practice here every day. It’s just like another day at practice. The horses are at home. They aren’t going anywhere. They’ve been here time in and time out,” sophomore Brenlee Logan said. “They have been here so many times, they get used to it. They know the arena as well as we do. We don’t have to travel. It’s easier on them and they compete better when they don’t have to travel long distances.”
This weekend will be the first Lancer Rodeo production under Peterson, and he says it has been quite the undertaking.
“Everything down to helping get the stock here and arranged, getting the draw right, working with the producers, your announcer, your judges, your secretary, getting all those things in order so hopefully you can have a smooth production,” Peterson said.
Action gets underway at 11 a.m. Friday with a slack for team roping, goat tying, calf roping and breakaway. The evening performance begins at 6 p.m. with all the events, including the rough stock events. On Saturday, events begin at 9 a.m. with barrel racing, team roping, steer wrestling, calf roping and breakaway. The evening performance begins at 6 p.m. and will feature an event for the kids with prizes.
The weekend is capped off on Sunday where the top 10 in each event is brought back for the short round. Action gets underway at 11 a.m.
Admission is $5 for adults and free for all high school and younger students.
“It’s exciting. It’ll be a big boost to Torrington’s economy,” Peterson said. “We’ll bring in hundred’s of kids who’ll buy motel rooms, buy diesel and spend money at all the restaurants. It’s exciting for them to come see Torrington and see the nice facilities we have here. That’s why we want to have a good production and try to get a good crowd here to support those kids.”
It’s not just Peterson who is excited for this weekend.
“I’m excited to see the amount of fans we get this year. Our banquet was a huge success, so I feel like we’ll have a lot of outside support,” sophomore barrel racer, breakaway roper, goat tier and team roper Karissa Rayhill said. I think we’ll have a great showing. We have a lot of great kids who are performing this weekend.
Meanwhile, sophomore Hanna Huffman, who is in her third season at EWC, hasn’t had the best of the seasons but is hopeful she can get her season turned around this weekend in front of family.
“It would mean quite a bit. I have some family coming. We want to show the community we are committed, and this rodeo program has a good ways to grow and have the community support. To have a good performance here would help out the program a lot.”
Lancers open spring season
Eastern Wyoming rodeo team traveled north to Gillette and saw four competitors reach Sunday’s short round.
Rayhill finished the weekend fourth in the average in barrel racing, while Ryker Goodman was sixth in goat tying. Logan went into the short round sitting in third place but broke out in the short round.
The Lady Lancers finished fourth as a team with 140 points. Gillette College won the team title with 590 points. Northeastern Junior College was second with 210.
In the men’s division, Colton Zimmerman was third in team roping with partner Kolby Bradley of Casper College.
Laramie County Community College won the men’s team title with 680 points. Gillette College was second with 490. EWC was eighth with 120 points.
Team standings coming into the Lancer Rodeo
1. University of Wyoming 3,460
2. Casper College 3,065
3. Laramie County 2,620
4. Central Wyoming 1,805
5. Sheridan College 1,145
6. Eastern Wyoming 1,020
7. Gillette College 895
8. Chadron State 790
9. Otero 555
10. Lamar 220
1. Gillette 2,549
2. University of Wyoming 1,678.33
3. Laramie County 1,183.33
4. Eastern Wyoming 573
5. Northeastern 535
6. Chadron State 368
7. Sheridan College 275
8. Central Wyoming 190
9. Casper College 100