Aggie barrel racer leads national ranks |

Aggie barrel racer leads national ranks

NCTA Aggie Women’s Rodeo Team is in third place of the Great Plains. Members are Tara Spatz, Trotwood, Ohio; Tryssta Duval, Max; Lexus Kelsch, McLaughlin, S.D., and Erica Mowery, Middleburg, Penn. Photo by Tori Rossenbach

Fargo, N.D. – Two rodeo athletes from the Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture in Curtis, Neb., won awards at the Bison Stampede last weekend in Fargo.

The contest amid Great Plains Region college teams was hosted by North Dakota State University (NDSU).

Champion barrel racer Lexus Kelsch of McLaughlin, S.D, and her horse, Tigger, won the long go-round with a time of 13.03 seconds and short go with a faster time yet at 12.75 seconds for a combined average title and belt buckle.

Kelsch and Tigger lead the barrel racing nationally for all colleges in both the Great Plains Region and the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association (NIRA).

Brock Henry of Rushville, Neb., a steer wrestler and team roping header for the NCTA Aggies teamed with Haley Johnson of North Dakota in team roping to win fourth in the average. They won third in the long-go with a time of 7.7 seconds, and fourth in the short-go at 14 seconds.

The Great Plains Region is one of 11 NIRA regions featuring more than 100 teams from 2-year and 4-year colleges. Student athletes compete in events of saddle bronc riding, bare back riding, bull riding, tie-down roping, steer wrestling, team roping, barrel racing, breakaway roping, and goat tying.

At the end of this fall rodeo season, the NCTA Women’s Team is third in the Great Plains standings and the NCTA Men’s Team is ninth, said Coach Taylor Rossenbach, Curtis.

“The team did well and will have a break from collegiate contests until we go to Brookings, S.D., in early April when the spring rodeos resume,” said Rossenbach. The first-year NCTA coach is a team roper and calf roper and Aggie alumnus.

NCTA athletes rank well in the top 20 of Great Plains Region events:

1. Barrel racing, Lexus Kelsch, McLaughlin, S.D.

7. Tie down roping, Cash Talamantez, Lisco, Neb.

8. Steer wrestling, Brock Henry, Rushville, Neb.

13. Team roping, header, Brock Henry, Rushville, Neb.

Aggie Rodeo is one of four traveling teams in collegiate contests for NCTA this fall. The others are livestock judging, ranch horse team, and shooting sports. All are part of the academic and skills programs in the NCTA agricultural production systems division.

The rodeo team will compete next at the Spring opener in April at Brookings, S.D.

Additional information is available at or contact NCTA at 1-800-3-CURTIS.

–Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture

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