— COURTESY — WEATHERFORD COLLEGE
The Weatherford College rodeo team fell short of a national championship at the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyo. But they will forever have history as the first team from WC to advance to the competition. The program had sent numerous individuals over the previous nine seasons.
“Shoot, I can’t be disappointed,” said WC Coach Johnny Emmons. “We made history.”
Jared Parsonage posted the highest finish for Coyotes, reaching the short-go of bull riding and tying for 10th in the final standings. The top 12 after three rounds advanced to the short-go.
Landon Williams finished 17th in tie down roping, and Kody Mahaffey was 25th in steer wrestling. Also, Williams, Casey Tew, Cole Wheeler and Aaron Macy tied for 41st in team roping.
As a team, the Coyotes finished 42nd. Tarleton State University, the only team to top WC in the Southwest Region, finished second nationally to the University of Tennessee-Martin by just 25 points (755-730).
Among the week’s highlights, Parsonage was in first place after the opening round of bull riding.
For Williams, it was his second consecutive season in which he competed at the CNFR. He also qualified in team roping as WC’s lone qualifier in 2013.
Tew is the third member of his family to compete at the CNFR. His brother Cody won a national championship in team roping in 2007, and sister Cadee qualified in breakaway roping for WC in 2011 and in team roping for Tarleton State University in 2013.
“I’m proud of them. It took a lot just to get here, and I’d bring the same bunch back next year if I could,” Emmons said.
Actually, Emmons can only bring two-thirds of the qualifiers back. The four returners are Tew, Wheeler, Macy and Mahaffey.
“We may not be able to duplicate Jared and Landon scoring 1,700 points like the two of them did this season, but hopefully we can spread it around to several guys if that’s what we have to do,” said Emmons. “We’ve got some real talent and we still have a real good team. These four can use this experience to help them get back next season, and they can bring some others along with them.”