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UW Rodeo Teams Open Fall Season at Central Wyoming College

September 10, 2014

A cheat sheet will be needed to identify the University of Wyoming rodeo team members this season, with both clubs going through dramatic changes.

Transfers make up the bulk of the UW men’s team, which was fifth place in the Central Rocky Mountain Region (CRMR) last season, and 22nd at the College National Finals Rodeo (CNFR) in Casper.

Half of the UW women’s four-member team will return, but the other two are incoming freshmen. The Cowgirls are coming off a disappointing season, placing 10th overall in the CRMR and not qualifying anyone for the CNFR.

“We have a pretty good contingent, but we have turned over about half the people on the squad,” says veteran UW rodeo Coach George Howard. “Granted, there is a little change there, but it’s not too bad. I am hoping we put all these good ones together.”

Both UW teams open the season Sept. 12-14 at the Central Wyoming College rodeo in Riverton.

Just one UW men’s CNFR qualifier returns from a year ago: senior team roper Brit Ellerman of Fort Lupton, Colo. Ellerman placed 11th in last year’s college finals with a different partner, but returns with his old partner, Trey Yates of Eastern Wyoming College in Torrington. The pair was among the top four in the region last season.

The other five members of the six-man UW team selected to compete in opening rodeo are all transfers.

Hunter Brasfield, a Delta, Colo., sophomore, will compete in bareback riding. He rode last season for New Mexico Highlands and was second in the region and a CNFR qualifier. He transferred to UW after the New Mexico program folded.

Eastern New Mexico transfer Brady Dinwoody, a senior from Canada, also qualified for last summer’s CNFR in bareback riding.

Three timed events cowboy Tylor Bond, a senior from Avondale, Colo., will compete this weekend in team and calf roping and steer wrestling. He transferred from Northeastern Junior College in Sterling, Colo.

Junior Dillon Simonson, a Laramie County Community College transfer from Purdum, Neb., will compete in steer wrestling and both roping events.

The sixth person on the team is Clint Buringa, a junior from Golden, Colo. He last competed for Lamar Community College in Lamar, Colo.

Howard also will take a look at three other UW team members throughout the fall season. Returning is sophomore bareback rider and team roper Jaden Clark of Wellfleet, Neb. His brother, Wyatt Clark, placed fifth in bareback riding for the Pokes at last summer’s CNFR.

Transfer Ethan Hecht from Merrill, Iowa, will compete in bareback and bull riding and twice qualified for the CNFR for Iowa Central Community College. Freshman Brock Wahlert from Pueblo, Colo., is a steer wrestler and bareback rider.

The Cowgirls will be led by a pair of returning veterans. Sophomore Amelia Anderson from Forsyth, Mont., will compete in all three women’s events -- goat tying, where she placed 12th in the region last season, breakaway roping and barrel racing.

She will be joined on the four-member team by Cassie Hamilton, a Chehalis, Wash., junior, competing in breakaway and team roping.

Howard has selected a pair of newcomers, both incoming freshmen, to compete this weekend. Josee Vogel from Pavillion will compete in goat tying and breakaway roping. She took third in the Wyoming state high school goat tying competition and qualified for the national finals. The other freshman is Kylie Kvamme from Carrington, N.D., who won her state’s high school breakaway roping title and qualified for the national finals. She will compete in her specialty and goat tying this weekend.

Also getting a look this season will be Delta, Colo., freshman Brittany Brasfield, the younger sister of UW bareback rider Hunter Brasfield. The younger Brasfield won the Colorado goat tying state title and was second in breakaway roping. Kailee Webb, an Isabell, S.D., freshman, competes in goat tying and roping events.

The UW teams will compete in 10 rodeos -- five each during the fall and spring seasons -- this year. The Pokes and Cowgirls will host their annual Laramie River Rendezvous Rodeo early next May.

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