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Two members of the University of Wyoming equestrian club have qualified to compete in the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) Zone 7 Championships April 5-6 in Baton Rouge, La.
Erin Downey, an undeclared major from Anchorage, Alaska, and Kristen Erickson, an animal and veterinary science major from Moorhead, Minn., will represent UW at the two-day event at Louisiana State University.
"I'm keeping my fingers crossed that both of them will get to go to nationals, too," says UW Coach Kari Randle, a senior animal science major from Laramie.
To qualify for the IHSA National Championship Show, May 9-11 at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center, Downey and Erickson must place among the top two finishers in their respective divisions at zones. Zone 7 includes collegiate teams from Wyoming, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas.
Downey will compete in the intermediate on the flat class; Erickson in the advanced walk-trot-canter class.
Led by Downey and Erickson, UW enjoyed the best regular season in program history this year, finishing as reserve high point champion in Hunter Seat in IHSA Zone 7, Region 1. West Texas A&M University placed first.
"I am extremely proud of everybody!" Randle says. "It's been a real team effort."
The IHSA, founded in 1967, includes more than 300 member institutions and 6,500 riders across the United States and Canada. For more information, go to the Web site at www.ihsainc.com.
UW and Laramie County Community College in Cheyenne are the only two Wyoming schools with IHSA teams.