SWOSU Rodeo Team to Compete in 2022 College National Finals

CASPER, Wyo. – Six members of the SWOSU Women’s and Men’s Rodeo Teams will start their quest to win a gold medal at the 2021 College National Finals Rodeo. It starts on Sunday June 13th from the Ford Wyoming Center, Casper. “All our athletes are really excited and I think they can do a lot of good out there in Casper,” SWOSU Head Rodeo Coach Mike Visnieski said. “I wish them all the best and appreciate their hard work and dedication during this season. It is important to stay focused on what we did and to stick to the daily routine. The results will come if we are consistent and stick to our process. As the Central Plains Regional Champions, SWOSU will send four cowgirls from the Women’s Team to Casper for the CNFR. Regional Champions Abby Hepper (Barrel Racing). Sierra Smith Regional runners-up will join the goat tying competition Winter Williams (All-Around) Sadie Wolaver (Barrel Racing), at the CNFR. Williams competes in both Barrel Racing or Breakaway. “We have had the strongest Women’s Team in the region and the Central Plains Region is one of the toughest regions in the nation,” Visnieski said. “If we go out there and have a good rodeo, then we are perfectly capable of winning it. With that said, a lot of things can happen over the course of a four-head rodeo and it’s crazy how tight things can get, especially in the timed events.” On the men’s side, SWOSU will send two cowboys to Casper as Tim Troyer And Wyatt Lohman Both will be participating in the Saddle Bronc field. Troyer was named Regional Champion, and Lohman came in second. “Both of those guys are capable of winning it,” Visnieski said of his rough stock duo. “It’s going to come down to what they draw, so if they get the right ones I’m confident they’re going to win it.” The 2021 CNFR gets underway on Sunday afternoon with the first round in Bulls, Broncs & Breakaway before continuing with slack in each event throughout the day on Monday and Tuesday. Evening performances begin on Tuesday night and run through Friday, when the long round concludes. On Saturday evening, the top 12 competitors in each event will return for the Championship Round, which will culminate with the presentation of team and individual national championships. SWOSU Rodeo has a long tradition of success at the CNFR, with six team and 22 individual National Championships to their credit. The most recent Top 10 finishes for the Bulldogs came in 2016, when the Women’s Team placed fifth, and 2014, when the Men’s Team took sixth place. SWOSU’s last Championship came in 2012, when Tyrel Larsen won first in Saddle Bronc riding. Although his team hasn’t competed together since early May, Visnieski isn’t worried about rust being a problem when the Bulldogs get to Casper. “The thing of it is, they’ve all been entering and competing in amateur and professional rodeos ever since school got out and they haven’t let up,” Visnieski said. “Going into Casper, I don’t think they need to change anything up. Mentally, we approach it the same and I think our crew is really mentally tough and the pressure that comes with competing on this stage is exciting for them.” The College National Finals Rodeo is expanding live television coverage on ESPN. This year, all performances of the CNFR—Tuesday through Saturday (June 15-19)—will air on ESPN3. CNFR performances will stream live and replay the following day. Additionally, the CNFR telecast production team will be producing two programs to air later in the summer on ESPNU. These programs will feature interviews, premier action from Casper, Wyoming, and the crowing of the CNFR champions.

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