Two days before the start of the fall rodeo season, University of Wyoming Cowgirl Kelsey Lensegrav’s goat tying horse developed a serious abscess in its back hoof. The veterinarian had to drill into the hoof to drain the swollen area. The Interior, S.D., graduate student was left without a horse for the remainder of the semester.
She turned to a horse, Cosmo, her family earlier purchased and rode just once before the season started. It turned out to be a “train wreck,” Lensegrav says. Forward to this week: Cosmo and Lensegrav are on the edge of qualifying for the College National Finals Rodeo (CNFR) short go Saturday night in Casper.
One of her teammates — Riata Day, from Fleming, Colo. — also is knocking on the door.
During Wednesday night’s performance, Lensegrav rode Cosmo to their third straight successful goat tying run. The Cowgirl team member’s goal this week was just to get better each round. And she did. Lensegrav opened with a 7-second time, lowered it to 6.8 seconds and finished up with a 6.6 Wednesday night for a three-run time of 20.4 seconds to move her ninth in the average.
“That was my plan coming in — to be better each round — and nothing feels better than a plan coming together,” she says. “After that first practice, Cosmo was honest, and he just kept getting better and better.”
So good, in fact, that Lensegrav placed in the average in each of the five spring rodeos to finish among the top four goat tying competitors in the region.
Faith Hoffman, from Kiowa, Colo., and Taylor Latham, of Lapoint, Utah, completed their third runs Wednesday night.
Hoffman was the first one up among her teammates and completed a 7-second run to give her a 21.6 accumulative time on three runs. Earlier in the week, she tied for the second-best time in the opener, but her overall time will keep her out of the top 12. She is sitting 15th.
Latham recorded a 6.1-second time in her first run but suffered a no time in the second when her goat kicked out of its tie. However, she added to her team’s points when she blazed to a 6.1-second mark Wednesday, tying the third round’s top time with two days of competition left.
Day completes her third run Friday and is still sitting close enough to be among the top 12 who advance to the short go.
This week’s goat tying competition is tight, with several more competitors all vying to get into the top 12.
Entering Wednesday’s performance, the Cowgirls were sitting sixth in the team standings.
The only UW men’s team member up Wednesday night was tie down roper Chadron Coffield, who wrapped up his CNFR week with his best time of 8.3 seconds on a clean run. The Yuma, Colo., senior opened the week with a 13.3 on his first head and didn’t get a time recorded in the second round. His Wednesday time stands as the third round’s best, but two nights of calf roping remain this week.