• CALF ROPING — Cody Ohl missed nearly three months of competition this year in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association.
He was able to rope at only 27 events that counted toward qualifying for the National Finals Rodeo, but still he made it to his 13th NFR.
If anyone counted Ohl out of contention for a seventh calf roping world championship then they don’t know Cody Ohl.
The 34-year-old from Rosenburg, Texas, roped his calf in 7.6 seconds to win Thursday night’s opening go-round and its $16,394 payout. That moves him up one spot to sixth in the championship standings.
Trevor Brazile, who started the 10-day rodeo ranked first, did not earn a check.
“Coming in here after roping in only 27 rodeos and still having a chance to win the world championship is great,” said Ohl, who won last year’s calf roping titles. “I came in here with a bang, and I’m knocking on the door already.”
Part-time Las Vegas resident and Moapa Valley High product Matt Shiozawa placed third to win $9,783.
• ALL-AROUND — Josh Peek of Pueblo, Colo., finished second in calf roping to earn $12,956 and cut into the $145,000 lead held by Brazile at the start of the NFR.
Brazile did not place in calf roping or team roping.
• BAREBACK RIDING — Jason Jeter’s streak of five straight NFR qualifications ended a year ago, but he wasted no time taking advantage of his return.
Jeter won the opening go-round with an 86.5-point ride on Coconut Roll out of the Calgary Stampede rodeo company.
“My best ride was on her mom when I scored 911/2 a few years ago,” he said of Grated Coconut.
• STEER WRESTLING — Wade Sumpter, 26, opened his second Finals with a go-round win by turfing his steer in 3.5 seconds to move to the top spot of the world standings.
The resident of Fowler, Colo., won $16,394 to move $562 ahead of Shawn Greenfield of Lakeview, Ore.
“You have to start aggressive and stay aggressive,” Sumpter said. “This is a little barn, and you have to start fast, and there are so many good bulldoggers here.”
• TEAM ROPING — Travis Tryan of Billings, Mont., combined with Michael Jones of Stephenville, Texas, to rope their steer in 4.3 seconds for the win.
“We knew we had a pretty decent steer tonight,” said Tryan, the header. “I tried to get it on him fast, and Michael took care of the rest.”
• SADDLE BRONC RIDING — Cody DeMoss of Heflin, La., rode Flying 5 Rodeo’s Spring Blues for 85 points to win the go-round and take over first in the world standings.
DeMoss took the season money lead from Cody Wright of Milford, Utah, who was bucked off. That could be costly for Wright in the NFR aggregate standings.
“Usually we just try to struggle through (the first round), and today, that was just a really good horse,” said DeMoss, who finished last year ranked second and is competing in his fifth NFR. “I’m a little more relaxed, just ready to go.”
• BARREL RACING — Jill Moody of Letcher, S.D., made her first ride in the NFR one she’ll never forget. The 42-year-old completed the course in 14.00 seconds on her horse, Dolly, to edge season money leader Brittany Pozzi-Pharr by one-hundredth of a second.
“I came in here looking at this rodeo as 10 one-headers,” Moody said. “If I don’t win another dime out of here, I’ll be tickled.”
• BULL RIDING — J.W. Harris of May, Texas, scored 89 points on Growney Brothers’ Lights Out to win the go-round. He was one of six riders to complete their eight-second rides.
Marcus Michaelis, a UNLV graduate and former member of the Rebels rodeo team, placed fourth in the round. Current UNLV student Colin McTaggart didn’t make the eight-second whistle.
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