EMCC rodeo teams set to compete in regular-season finale in Senatobia

Published 3:01 pm Wednesday, April 27, 2022

MONTICELLO, Ark. — With the regular season of the NIRA’s Ozark Region schedule winding down, East Mississippi Community College’s rodeo teams enjoyed some success this past weekend at the 16th annual Weevil Stampede collegiate rodeo hosted by the University of Arkansas at Monticello. The three-day NIRA Ozark Region event concluded Saturday night at the Drew County Fairgrounds.

Head coach Morgan Goodrich’s EMCC rodeo teams will now collectively turn their attention to concluding the regular-season portion of their schedule this week (April 28-30) at Northwest Mississippi Community College’s annual Ranger Rodeo event. The three-day rodeo will take place at the Northwest Multipurpose Arena in Senatobia.

This past weekend at the UAM-hosted rodeo, Taycie Matthews (Wynne, AR) won the barrel racing competition to lead the EMCC women to a second-place finish with 190 team points. On the men’s side, the Lions earned fifth-place honors with 290 team points.

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Nationally top-ranked Missouri Valley College out-distanced the University of West Alabama, 990-590, to collect the men’s team title at UAM, while the UWA women prevailed this past weekend by totaling 430 team points.

For the EMCC women’s team, Matthews registered her seventh career region event victory and second of the season by collecting 140 points on runs of 14.79 and 14.38 seconds. She is the reigning Ozark Region barrel racing champion after winning five regional events during the 2020-21 season. Matthews previously won this past fall at the Three Rivers College rodeo in Sikeston, Missouri.

East Mississippi’s other 50 women’s points from this past weekend were claimed by Blair Bryant (Hatchechubbee, AL) in the breakaway roping competition. She also paired with Arkansas-Monticello’s Kody Boatright in advancing to the short go of the team roping event but did not score.

On the men’s side for the Lions, Clay Livengood (Cleveland, NC) earned 150 individual points for his second-place finish in UAM’s tie-down roping event with times of 9.3 and 8.9 seconds.

EMCC had two other tie-down ropers collect team points this past weekend. Tanner Brown (Florence) placed third with 100 team points after winning the second round with an 8.3-second clocking. Scooba’s Matt Watt, out of Kemper Academy, added 30 points to the team effort.

Myles Neighbors (Benton, AR) was EMCC’s top point producer for the weekend by totaling 160 points in two events. In addition to grabbing 100 points for a fourth-place finish in steer wrestling that included a winning effort of 3.5 seconds in the short-go round, Neighbors joined Southern Arkansas’ Garrett Lock to earn 60 points apiece for a fifth-place tie in the team roping event.

EMCC bareback rider Gavin Lee (Poplarville) also advanced to Saturday’s short go but did not score.