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postheadericon Student Athlete Rodeo Action Starts

The future stars of pro rodeo take center stage this weekend with the return of high school and college rodeo action for local contestants.  The West Coast Region of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association (NIRA) hosts its first rodeo since February with the CSU-Fresno rodeo in Clovis, California. The UNLV Rodeo team looks to improve its second place standing during two rodeos this weekend; the men's team trails Feather River College by nearly 1400 points while the Lady Rebs are just 228 points behind Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.  College rodeo action continues with the West Hills College event.   Along with team titles, competitors are seeking individual titles in each event and the all around (given to the highest point earner in more than one event.) The ultimate goal for all contestants is qualification to the College National Finals Rodeo (CNFR) held each June in Casper, Wyoming.

UNLV standout Bailey Corkill holds the lead for the women's All Around, a title she won a year ago as well. She leads a strong contingent of UNLV student-athletes in the goat tying where she is ranked second with teammates Olie Fowler and Kallie Roeser right behind in third and fourth, respectively.  Junior Zack Brown is leading the region in the bareback riding while freshman Fabian Scotto is fourth in the steer wrestling.  The West Coast Region has just one rodeo after this weekend before wrapping up its 2011-2012 season here in Las Vegas during the Regional Finals at the South Point Equestrian Center.

High school and junior high students from Las Vegas and Boulder City will compete during two days of rodeo action in Fernley this weekend. This is the first competition for the Nevada State High School Rodeo Association (NSHSRA) since November.  Leading the Clark County student-athletes is Kelsie Leas, a senior at Northwest Career and Technical Academy (NWCTA).  Leas qualified for her second National High School Rodeo Finals (NHSFR) in 2011 and is hoping to make a return trip this year. She is currently ranked in the top ten of the barrel racing, goat tying and breakaway roping.  Another Las Vegas teen, Aspyn Civil leads the standings in the breakaway roping and is second in the barrels.  In the junior high division, Shaylynne Reymore leads the barrel racing and goat tying as well as the all around standings.  Fellow Las Vegas cowgirl Makenah Gibson leads the pole bending while Jarad Sanford is ahead in the chute dogging.  The NSHRA will host six more rodeos before the state finals in June. 

Courtesy of the Las Vegas rodeo | Examiner.com.  Photos courtesy of the Leas family, Corkill family, and UNLV Rodeo.

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