BROOKINGS – The South Dakota State cowboys made up some ground in the Great Plains Region standings as they totaled 590 points to finish second at the 2018 Jackrabbit Stampede over the weekend at the Swiftel Center.
Dickinson State, the men’s leader in the standings, won the rodeo with 610 points but the Jackrabbits now hold the second spot in the Great Plains behind the Blue Hawks.
The SDSU women took fourth with 205 points at the Stampede as Black Hills State, the leader after the Fall season, racked up 400 points to take the Stampede title.
“There were only 200 points separating first from fifth (in the men’s standings), so it’s a big jump,” said SDSU coach Ron Skovly. “We had two that didn’t compete last fall in Scott Halverson and Reed Arneson, so I’m excited for the Spring – we didn’t have the best Fall – coming into Spring, it’s anybody’s game.”
Arneson accounted for 210 of SDSU’s points as he won the first-go in the saddle bronc, and his score of 65 carried over to win the average, as well.
He teamed with Mariah Glaus to tie for the top spot in the first-go of team roping with a time of 7.5 seconds, which carried over for a tie for third in the average.
Brody Jones placed second overall in tie-down roping with a two-run time of 27.6 seconds – giving the Jackrabbits another 140 points.
Jim Bob Ellsworth placed second in bareback riding with a two-ride total of 144 points (69-75) – good for 130 team points.
Gannon Gustafson added 110 team points as he needed just 13.5 seconds to tie down a calf in the finals, and finished fourth overall with a two-run total of 35.5 seconds. He teamed with Sterling Gehrke to place sixth overall in team roping after their 8.6 time in the first go carried over to the average.
On the women’s side, CNFR qualifier Jacey Hupp edged the Yellow Jackets’ Carlee Johnston by 1/2 second to win the goat tying – which ended up earning the Jackrabbits 175 team points. The two tied in the first-go with a time of 6.4 seconds before Hupp bettered her mark with a 6.1 in the finals to take the top spot at 12.5.
“She got out of there (the CNFR) with a little fire in her – she’s tearing it up a little bit,” said Skovly.
Madison Rau’s sixth-place finish in the barrel racing accounted for the rest of SDSU’s team points.
Rau turned in a time of 13.83 seconds in the first-go, but knocked down a barrel in the finals to post a time of 18.74 seconds after the penalty, which gave her a 32.57 total for two runs.
The Jackrabbits head to Spearfish this week for the Black Hills State University rodeo.
Register photo: South Dakota State cowgirl Madison Rau rounds the final can during Saturday’s Jackrabbit Stampede finals at the Swiftel Center on the way to a sixth-place finish in barrel racing.