Contact: Chris Vito - Assistant Sports Information Director - (218)281-8445
(Crookston, Minn.)- The University of Minnesota, Crookston Equestrian teams traveled to Brookings, S.D. this past weekend to compete at South Dakota State University. Both teams performed well.
The Golden Eagle Western Equestrian team captured Reserve High Point Team both days. Friday's show started a little slow but gained momentum as the day went on. Amanda Peterson (Sr, Rochester, Minn.) placed second in the Open Horsemanship. Becky Rhodus (So, Kansas City, Missouri) took first place in her Novice Division giving her enough points to point up into the Advanced Horsemanship and qualify for Regionals. Additionally, Megan Kramer (So, Owatonna, Minn.) and Amanda Flint (Fr, Aberdeen, S.D.) both posted big wins in their divisions. Kaitlyn Tollefsrud (So, Hawley, Minn.) and Anna Steen (So, Hanover, Minn.) rode well to earn second place in their classes. The team scores were close with the University of Minnesota, Crookston just a few points behind North Dakota State University.
Saturday morning again started a little weak but quickly gained momentum. Megan Kramer and Addie O'Neil (Fr, Redwood Falls, Minn.) both placed second in the Intermediate Division with Jackie Nikkel (So, Lundar, Manitoba) taking fourth place which earned her enough points to qualify for the Regional Horse Show. The Golden Eagles went on to win the last four classes of the day with winning performances from Kaitlyn Tollefsrud, Amanda Flint, Kayla Krueger and Anna Steen.
"I was pretty proud of how our girls rode all weekend," says Golden Eagle Western Coach Nicky Overgaard. I especially like how they are stepping up to the plate and really riding and showing themselves and their horses to the best of their abilities.The team has really come along in their horsemanship skills and showing abilities. We are looking forward to our next competition which will be held at NDSU in three weeks."
Coach Brooke Leininger and the Golden Eagle Hunt Seat squad also had a solid showing. U of M, Crookston took the High Point Team honors both Saturday and Sunday. The team is now ranked as the number one team in the region having moved ahead of rival University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Nicole Veres (Sr, Random Lake, Wis.) was High Point rider for Saturday and tied for High Point rider on Sunday. Wins on both days came in On the Flat and second place finishes came in Over Fences. This weekend Veres qualified for the Regional Championships. Team captain Sara Wells (Sr, Calgary, Alberta) tied for High Point rider at Sunday's competition with a win On the Flat and a second place finish in Over Fences, and also qualified for the Regional Championships. Coach Leininger expects both Veres and Wells to qualify for Regionals in Over Fences this weekend at the home competition. Jessica Biddle (Sr, Elburn, Ill.) won her Open Flat section. Team captain Laura Critchett (Jr, Shoreview, Minn.) put in her best rides of the year, taking second place in the Open Equitation Over Fences in Open Equitation on the Flat. Jessica Charles (Fr, Belgrad Lakes, ME), competing for U of M, Crookston for the first time, won both of her Beginner Walk Trot Canter classes. April Jordan (Fr, Beaver Dam, Wis.) took second place in Novice Flat and Angela Peterson (Fr, Detroit Lakes, MN) took second on Saturday in Advanced Walk Trot Canter. Kaitlyn Weiger (So, Duluth, Minn.), riding for U of M, Crookston for the first time, won her class on Sunday. Melanie Rodriguez (Fr, Chanhassen, Minn.) won her class both Saturday and Sunday. Paige Marek (Fr, St. Croix Falls, Wis.) also showing for U of M, Crookston for the first time, tied for High Point Rider on Sunday with a win in Over Fences and a second place finish in On the Flat.
For more information, visit the Golden Eagle Athletics Web site at http://www.goldeneaglesports.com/.
The University of Minnesota, Crookston is a NCAA Division II Institution and a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC). The Golden Eagle Equestrian team is a member of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA).
Photo Caption: (Left to Right) Becky Rhodus, Nicole Veres, Sara Wells