By Benny Rogers, TVCC Sports Information
Approximately 400 competitors, representing 20 colleges and universities, were on hand for the 5th annual Trinity Valley Community College National Intercollegiate Rodeo this past weekend at the Henderson County Fairpark Complex.
TVCC was well represented in the two days of competition with five team members qualifying for the short-go round of the sixth event of a 10-event rodeo season.
Qualifying for the short-go for TVCC were team ropers Wenceslao “Lightning” Aguilera and Kolby “Thunder” Miller, Austin Gross in bull riding, Justus Whitcher in tiedown roping and Garrett Jones in bareback riding.
Aguilera and Miller roped their first steer in 4.7 seconds, which earned third place in the round. They also placed fifth in the average. Aguilera and Miller are currently in first place in the Southern Region of the NIRA and second in the national standings.
Gross qualified for the finals and scored an 81 which placed second in the round.
Austin placed third in the average and is currently fourth in the Southern Region standings.
Following the 10 regional rodeos, the top three competitors in each event and the top two teams in each region qualify for the College National Finals, which are held in Casper, Wyoming in June.
“We have four rodeos to go and are hoping to stay and finish strong this year,” said TVCC rodeo coach Brent Bratton. “Our students’ have such determination and drive.
“It would be a great feeling to have a truckload of TVCC students qualifying for the CNFR and make a few of the university students stay home. The community and college is so supportive of this team, it would be a great feeling to bring home a national title for them.