CHADRON – Four Chadron State College cowboys will be competing at the College National Finals Rodeo in the Events Center at Casper this coming week. The action will begin at 1 p.m. Sunday and continue through Saturday night, when the winners of the nine events are crowned.
The Chadron State entries are bull riders Chasen Cole of Hermosa, South Dakota, Cordale Martin of Panhandle, Texas, and Dakota Rice of Kellogg, Idaho, along with Prestyn Novak of Newell, South Dakota, who will rope calves.
Cole and Novak won saddles as the Central Rocky Mountain Region champions in their events following the 10 rodeos during the 2016-17 school year. Martin was the runner-up to Cole in the bull riding while Rice earned the right to compete at nationals after being elected the student representative on the region’s board of directors this year.
Novak scored 590 points in tie down roping to edge two Casper College contestants for title. He tallied 590 points, Bryce Bott 570 and Logan Brown 560. Novak also competed at the finals a year ago, caught all four of his calves and finished eighth among the 46 entries.
Cole came from behind to win the 2016-17 regional bull riding championship by placing second in the event at the final rodeo of the season. He finished with 580 points. Martin was the next with 510 and Logan Biever of Gillette College was third with 480.
Rice is also a capable bull rider. He was fifth in this year’s regional standings with 290 points and qualified for finals a year ago, when he placed third in the region.
CSC rodeo coach Dustin Luper said all four competed really well this year and with a little luck could earn lots of points.
Two sessions of “Broncs, Bulls and Breakaway” will open the rodeo Sunday starting at 1 p.m.
The next two days will be especially busy. Starting at 7 a.m. both Monday and Tuesday, “slack,” will take place. When it has ended, all the contestants will have completed two of the three go-rounds before the finals.
The remaining go-round will be in shorter segments beginning with the first official performance of the rodeo at 7 p.m. Tuesday and continuing the next three nights at the same time.
The championship go-round involving the top 12 contestants in each event will begin at 7 p.m. Saturday.
While cowboys will be the lone Chadron State representatives at this year’s CNFR, the college’s cowgirls have been in the limelight in recent years. The CSC women tied for sixth in the final team standings in 2013, were the reserve champions in 2015 and finished fourth last summer.
Shelby Winchell of Scottsbluff was a member of all three teams. She was a goat tying finalist in 2013, shared second place in the event in 2015 and won the championship a year ago, when she wrapped up her four goats in 25 seconds flat.