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2021 CNFR competition kicks off with Bulls Broncs & Breakaway

CASPER, Wyo. (June 13, 2021) — After two years of ups and downs, the 72nd edition of the College National Finals Rodeo (CNFR) got off to a rousing start at the Ford Wyoming Center in Casper.

Last year’s events were cancelled due to the pandemic and this year contestants, fans, coaches, the state of Wyoming and Casper community are all excited to be celebrating college rodeo again. The competition started off with the Bulls Broncs and Breakaway Sunday afternoon which saw the first round complete in four events. 

Sophomore Cole Franks from Clarendon College won the first round of bareback riding at the 72nd CNFR on Sunday with an 83.5-point ride. CNFR photo by Jackie Jensen.

The first round of bareback riding featured some of the best that the CNFR has ever seen. Cole Franks from Clarendon (Texas) College won his signature event with a score of 83.5 points. Franks is also in the top 20 in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association and won the Southwest Region of the National Intercollegiate Association. He is making a bid for the all-around here competing in the saddle bronc riding as well where he got 73.5 points to finish in the 11th spot.

Franks is the son of Bret Franks who qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in saddle bronc riding. Franks has been coaching at Clarendon College and has had two national saddle bronc riding champions to his credit. Wyatt Casper won the CNFR in 2016 and Riggin Smith was the 2019 champion and helped their men’s team finish in third place.

There were only six points separating the top eight in the bareback riding and among those was champion Lane McGeHee from Sam Houston State University who won the title here in 2016 as a freshman. McGeHee tied with Ty Pope from Missouri Valley College for the fourth spot with 80 points each.

The popularity of breakaway roping has always been high here, but with the addition of the event at pro rodeos across the country competition is getting tougher. A time under two seconds got the top spot on Sunday. Winter Williams from Southwestern Oklahoma State University stopped the clock in 1.9 seconds for the win.

Williams just earned her degree in allied health sciences and is also competing in the barrel racing here. She will have her first run in that event on Monday morning during slack and will be in contention for a women’s all-around title.

Winter Williams from Southwestern Oklahoma State University has been the fastest breakaway roper at the 2021 CNFR. The Copan, Oklahoma resident stopped the clock in 1.9 seconds to win the first round.

Another degree earning senior got the win in the saddle bronc riding and while he calls Craig, Colorado home, he is a Wyoming Cowboy. Garrett Uptain, who got his bachelor’s degree in ag business from the University of Wyoming scored 79.5 points to edge out Clarendon College’s Weston Patterson and Western Texas College’s Dylan Schofield who each had 79 points for second place.

The 2018 National High School Rodeo Association champion bull rider Cole Skender was the most successful contestant here in the first round. Skender, who won his high school title for his home state of Arkansas now attends Three Rivers College in Poplar Bluff, Missouri. He was one of seven successful riders on Sunday and earned the top spot with a 84.5-point ride.

Competition at the 2021 CNFR continues with slack on Monday, June 14 beginning at 7 a.m. The first round of barrel racing, goat tying, steer wrestling, tie-down roping and team roping will be completed then. The bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, bull riding and breakaway roping will be in the second round.

CASPER, Wyo.—The following are results from Bulls Broncs and Breakaway at the College National Finals Rodeo, June 13, 2021, courtesy of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association. Complete results are available at www.collegerodeo.com.

Breakaway Roping: (first-round winners) 1, Winter Williams, Southwest Oklahoma State University, 1.9 seconds. 2, (tie) Grace Felton, Lassen College, and Zoie Bedke, Idaho State University, 2.1. 4, Harley Lynn, Southern Arkansas University, 2.2. 5, Abbie Shofner, New Mexico State University, 2.3. 6, Alli Masters, Northeastern Oklahoma State University, 2.5, 7, Courney Peters, Black Hills State University, 2.7. 8, (tie) Tanegai Zilverberg, Mitchell Technical Institute; and Jade Boote, Dickinson State University, and Catherine Clayton, Cochise, College, 2.8 seconds.

            Bareback Riding: (first round winners) 1, Cole Franks, Clarendon College, 83.5 points. 2, Jacob Lees, Western Texas College, 83. 3, Waylon Bourgeois, McNeese State University, 81.5. 4, Lane McGehee, Sam Houston State University, and Ty Pope, Missouri Valley College, 80 points each. 6, Dean Thompson, Western Texas College, 79.5. 7, Kolt Dement, Panola Junior College, 79. 8, Nick Pelke, Missouri Valley College, 77.5.

            Saddle Bronc Riding: (first round winners) 1, Garrett Uptain, University of Wyoming, 79.5 points. 2, Weston Patterson, Clarendon College, and Dylan Schofield, Western Texas College, 79 points each. 4, Jake Barnes, Tarleton State University, 77.5. 6, (tie) Cash Wilson, Clarendon College and Cash Wilson, College of Southern Idaho, 76 points each. 8, Quinten Taylor, Casper College, 75.

            Bull Riding: (first round winners) 1, (tie) Cole Skender, Three Rivers College, 84.5 points. 2, Quinten Taylor, Casper, College, 79.4. 3, Cullen Telfer, Tarleton State University, 78. 4, Hunter Tate, Coffeyville Community College, 77. 5, Trey Holston, Fort Scott Community College, 73.5. 5, Chris Villanueva, Sam Houston State University, 73. 7, Holden Moss, Three Rivers College, 69.5. 

The following are results after Monday slack at the 72nd annual College National Finals Rodeo, June 14, 2021 courtesy of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association. Complete results are available at www.collegerodeo.com.

Barrel Racing: (first round winners) 1, Tayla Moeykens, Montana State University, 14.24 seconds. 2, Sadie Wolaver, Southwestern Oklahoma State University, 14.27. 3, Allison Pauley, South Dakota State University, 14.29. 4, (tie) Amber Scales, Sam Houston State University; and Jaylie Matthews, East Mississippi Community College, 14.32 each. 7, Karson Bradley, University of Wyoming, 14.34. 8, Cashen Turner, Texas Tech University Lubbock, 14.36.

Bareback Riding: (second round leaders) 1, Dean Thompson, Western Texas College, 80.5. 2, Gauge McBride, Panola Junior College, 78. 3, Kolt Dement, Panola Junior College, 77.5. 4, Stetson Bierman, University of Tennessee – Martin, 70. 5, (tie) Cruz McNulty, Miles City Community College, and Shawn Perkins, Western Texas College, 68. 7. Mitchell Parham, California State University – Fresno, 66. 8, Jake Kesl, Gillette College, 62.

Breakaway Roping: (second round leaders) 1, Courtney Peters, Black Hills State University, 2.5. 2, Zoie Bedke, Idaho State University, 3.0. 3, (tie) Fallon Dyer, Missouri Valley College; Kaitlyn Harwell, New Mexico State University; Taylor Lawson, Southwest Texas junior College; and Blair Bryant, East Mississippi Community College, 3.1 seconds each. 7. Jacy Leach, Walla Walla Community College, 3.3. 8, Phannette Gray, Chadron State University, 3.9.

Steer Wrestling: (first round winners) 1, (tie) Bridger Anderson, Northwestern Oklahoma State University, and Zane Patrick, Mid Plains Community College, 4.5 seconds each. 3, Roy Lee, Missouri Valley College, 5.0. 4, Gus Franzen, Southeastern Oklahoma State University, 4.8. 5, Pacean DeLeeus, Cisco College, 5.9. 6, Walt Arnold, Tarleton State University, 6.1. 7, Bryce Harrison, University of Montana Western, 6.5. 8, Gavin Soileau, McNeese State University, 6.6.

            Team Roping: (first round winners) 1, Wyatt Murray and Whitt Crozier, Panhandle State University, 6.0 seconds. 2, Kellan and Carson Johnson, Casper College, 6.1. 3, J.C. and L.J. Yeahquo, Western Oklahoma State College, 6.3. 4, Bodie Mattson, Gillette College and Cody Lansing, Casper College, 6.4. 5, Judd Grover, South Dakota State University, and Chandler Comfort, Black Hills State University, 6.5. 6, Ethan Griffin, Oklahoma State University and Blayne Horne, Western Oklahoma State University, 6.6. 7, Peyton Walters, Hill College and Kaden Profili, Trinity Valley Community College, 7.6. 8, Reno Stoebner, Southwest Texas Junior College, and Colton Brittain, Hill College, 11.4.

            Saddle Bronc Riding: (second round leaders) 1, (tie) Keene Jestesen, Clarendon College, and Preston Ogle, Mesalands Community College, 79.0. 3, Cole Franks, Clarendon College, 77.5. 4, Clayson Hutchings, Utah State University Eastern, 73.5. 5, (tie) Russell Kay, College of Southern Idaho, and Weston Patterson, Clarendon College, 72. 7, Zane Munoz, Cochise College, 71. 8, Chance masters, Missouri Valley College, 70.

            Goat Tying: (first round winners) 1, Paige Rasmussen, Montana State University, 6.0 seconds. 2, (tie) Keni Labrum, Frank Phillips Cniversity, Jill Donnelly, Cochise College and McKenna McNeill, Oklahoma State University, ,6.ollege, and Sheyenne Anderson, Missouri Valley College, 6.2 each. 4, (tie) Madelyn Schauer, Eastern New Mexico University and Lacy Bruening, Southwest Texas Junior College, 6.3. 6, (tie) Jill Donnelly, Cochise College; Lindsey Pulsipher, Montana State University and McKenna McNeill, Oklahoma State University, 6.4.

            Tie Down Roping: (first round winners) 1, Macon Murphy, Panola Junior College, 8.1. 2, Ty Kirby, Northeastern Oklahoma A&M, 8.5. 3, Caleb Berquist, Montana State University, 8.7. 4, Zane Kilgus, Northeast Oklahoma A&M, 8.8. 5, Roy Lee, Missouri Valley College, 9.7. 6, Kincade Henry, Panola Junior College, 9.7. 7, (tie) Chasen Thrasher, University of Tennessee – Martin, and West Smith, East Mississippi Community College, 9.8 each.

            Bull Riding: (second round leaders – three qualified rides) 1, Tristen Hutchings, Sulross State University, 77.5. 2, T.J. Schmidt, Panhandle State University, 73.5. 3, Austin Allred, Utah State University Eastern, 72.5.  

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