The Mid-Plains Community College Rodeo Team set the bar high over the weekend during its first competition of the season.
MPCC's men's team placed first and the women's team came in third at the Falcon Frontier Days Rodeo in River Falls, Wis. on Saturday.
"I'm real proud of the kids," said Garrett Nokes, MPCC Rodeo Team timed event coach. "They've had three weeks of practice now and hit the ground running. They're a very competitive group. It's kind of like turning pit bulls loose in the practice pen. They want to win, and they are very team-oriented. So, they're pushing themselves and each other, and they get along awesome. It's been a really fun start to the year."
JD Draper, of Oakley, Kan., was named Men's All-Around Champion after finishing third in the steer wrestling and fourth in the tie-down roping.
Several other MPCC Rodeo Team members proved they are a force to be reckoned with as well. Individual results are as follows:
Steer wrestling: First - JT Bradley, Brewster; Second - Austin Madison, Whiting, Iowa; Fifth – Blake Henry, Rushville
Saddle bronc: Second – Lane Kennedy, Orleans, Neb.
Team roping: Third – Danielle Wray, Ord; Fourth – Sean Miller and Seth Pearson, both of Callaway
Tie-down roping: Sixth - Caden Kinderknecht, WaKeeney, Kan.
"We had six of our eight steer wrestlers in the short-go," Nokes said. "I would say we will probably have six steer wrestlers in the top 10 at the end of the year. They want it bad and are working hard. We can't ask much more than that."
He's looking forward to watching everyone improve and advance this season.
"I'm very, very happy with how the kids did," said Nokes. "But, I think at the end of the year we're going to look back and think this was just an average rodeo for us."
The team will compete next at its hometown rodeo, the MPCC Stampede, Friday and Saturday at the Wild West Arena in North Platte.
Performances will start at 7 p.m. each night. Admission is payable at the gate. It's $10 for adults and free for children 10 and younger.