SPEARFISH — Black Hills State University’s women’s rodeo team sits atop the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association national standings following the fall portion of its season.
The Yellow Jackets have collected 2,852.83 total points during their first six rodeos. Montana State is second with 2,146.50 points, followed by the University of Wyoming at 1,866.67.
“Our women’s team has attained that ranking before, during the season like this,” Black Hills State head coach Glen Lammers said in describing that number 1 spot.
The Lady Yellow Jackets held that ranking three times between October 2018 and May 2019.
What does the ranking mean to Lammers and the program?
“We’re just kind of in the middle of our season,” Lammers said. “It’s neat to be ranked at the top right now, but it’s not over until it’s over. The rest of the season is what’s going to be really important at this point.”
The Yellow Jackets earned top honors at their first five rodeos this fall.
Other highlights from the fall season stand out for Lammers.
“We’ve had some freshmen that have really stepped up,” Lammers said. “I’ve been pleased to see how the freshmen, and some of the upperclassmen, how the leadership has helped them transition quickly.”
Kallie Carey, Alyssa Lockhart, Joeni Lueders, and KeAnna Ward represent the senior class. Juniors are Tayle Brink, Savana Johnston, and Courtney Peters.
Sophomores are Taylor Hanson, Opal Harkins, and Emilee Pauley. Wacey Brown, Kassidy Caspers, Sydney Fuerst, Larissa Getten, Brooklyn Hanson, Chanci Kraft, Cashae McGee, Jaycie Rau, and Sydney Theobold represent the freshman class.
Lammers said the team is fun to coach because of its work ethic as well as its talent. He added members are really coachable and concerned with preparation.
“Doing more than expected,” Lammers said. “That’s what I see with that team, and that’s what I attribute a lot of their success to.”
Lammers sensed, before the season began, that the Yellow Jackets would be a talented team.
He went on to say it is unknown how athletes will respond until athletes practice and compete.
“As far as hitting our marks in the fall season with the women’s team, they’ve accomplished a lot,” Lammers said.
The team now takes a break before the four-event spring portion of the schedule begins.
“We’ve got the goals that are set out there, long term,” Lammers said in looking ahead. “But what’s critical for us is, every day, getting better.”
Lammers said the off-season is a great time to improve and make necessary changes.
In women’s all-around, Lockhart holds the top spot at 1,003.50 points. University of Montana-Western representative Ryland Ann Lufkin is second at 787.
Pauley is sixth nationally in women’s all-around with 733.83 points.
Brink sits in seventh place with a total of 600 points.
Black Hills State women’s team members are also listed in the national rankings.
(Ashtyn Carlson of the University of Montana is first at 695 points)
5 McGee 467 points
1 Lockhart 482 points
3 Pauley 375.5
12 Kraft 275.5
22 Brink 230
(Karissa Rayhill of Eastern Wyoming College is first at 665 points)
8 Ward 433.5 points
tie 19 Lockhart 300.5
The men’s team is ranked 17th in the nation and 4th regionally.
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