LUBBOCK, Texas - SPC's Sarah Walker found her groove in breakaway roping, advancing to her first short round in the event of the season when she recorded the third quickest time of 2.6 seconds during the long round. Walker went slightly faster during Saturday's final that featured the top 10 times of the rodeo and went on to capture SPC's first title of the 2011-12 season.
Competing eighth Saturday evening, Walker's time of 2.5 seconds gave her an overall time of 5.1 seconds to take the lead with two ropers remaining. Former South Plains College star Katie Vierstra could not keep up with Walker when she finished with a time of 2.8 seconds giving her an overall time of 5.2 seconds. With one roper remaining, Walker captured the buckle when the cowgirl from Eastern New Mexico did not record a time.
Overall, Walker recorded 145 points for her work in breakaway roping and will likely enter the top 10 of the Southwest region standings as a result.
Walker was joined in the breakaway roping final by Lady Texan teammates Kimberly Hendley and Keyla Kothman, who entered the final in a three-way tie for eighth place with times of 3.1 seconds, respectively. Hendley turned in the fifth best time of 3.2 seconds in the final and Kothman was right behind with the sixth best of 3.8 seconds. Overall, Hendley finished fifth and Kothman was seventh with combined times of 6.3 and 6.9 seconds.
Walker also competed in the goat tying final, finishing tenth.
SPC's Ty Willick took the fastest time of 3.8 seconds to the steer wrestling final and was joined by sophomore teammate Blake Gagnon. Gagnon, who snuck in with a three-way tie for the eighth best time of 5.0 seconds, tied for the fourth best time in Saturday's short round with a clocking of 5.1 seconds and would again finish in a three-way tie with an overall time of 10.1 seconds, this time for fourth.
Willick appeared to be poised to take the title as he looked to make a clean transition from his horse to the steer. Unfortunately, something went wrong and Willick did not attain a time. For their efforts, Willick and Gagnon will enter the spring season ranked 11th and 12th in the event.
Asa Daugherty made his first appearance in the finals of tie-down roping with the third best time of 9.2 seconds. Daugherty was on his way to improving that time when he suffered a hiccup in the tie-down, but still finished with a respectable time of 10.5 seconds, fourth best in the round. Daugherty would go on to finish fourth overall with a combined time of 19.7 seconds and earning 100 points which should place him in the top 15 of the tie-down standings.
As a team, both the Texans and Lady Texans had their best performances of the fall season as each finished fourth overall in the team standings. The Texans accumulated 205 team points and the Lady Texans finished with 155 points.
After competing five consecutive weekends, the SPC rodeo teams will now enjoy some time off before continuing the spring portion of their season in March.