Meridian Star


December 9, 2012

Mary Walker wins again at National Finals Rodeo

LAS VEGAS — LAS VEGAS (AP) — National Finals Rodeo rookie Mary Walker stayed perfect through three rounds, topping the barrel racing field with a 13.69-second run Saturday night.

The 53-year-old Walker leads all NFR competitors with earnings of $54,772 in the 10-round rodeo, and is second in the season standings with $182,064. Standings leader Brittany Pozzi of Victoria, Texas, shut out when she failed to place in the top six in the round, has earned $186,568.

Kelli Tolbert of Hooper, Utah, finished second in 13.73. Defending world champion Lindsay Sears of Nanton, Alberta, was third in 13.76, and is third in the standings with $156,492.

In saddle bronc riding, twin brothers Jesse and Jake Wright of Milford, Utah, tied for first at 87.

"I wouldn't want to split a round with anybody else," Jesse Wright said. "The money is great either way, so it's nice that we both got some. Tonight was outstanding for both of us and it was a good time."

He leads the standings with $162,103.

"We always knew we were going to be here, and it was just a matter of time before it rolled together," Jake Wright said. "I didn't imagine it could be this much fun. It's awesome to be able to ride this well."

Wade Sundell of Boxholm, Iowa, was third at 85, and remained second with $139,458.

In tie-down roping, Justin Maass of Giddings, Texas, was second in 7.2 and reclaimed the standings lead from Tuf Cooper of Decatur, Texas, who placed sixth in 8.0.

Cooper has earned $158,430. Cooper, who took the lead in the second round, is second with $158,285.

Six-time world champion Cody Ohl of Hico, Texas, won the round in 7.1 to become the third-highest earner in Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association history with $3,056,306. He also extended his tie-down roping record with his 43rd round victory.

In bull riding, Cody Teel of Kountze, Texas, won with an 88 on Whiskey Jack to take the standings lead with $185,782. Previous leader J.W. Harris of Mullin, Texas, didn't place among the top six, leaving him at $185,315.

In bareback riding, three-time world champion Will Lowe of Canyon, Texas, won with an 88 on Commanchero to close in on leader Kaycee Feild of Payson, Utah.

Defending world champion Feild, who has earned $173,393, finished in a three-way tie for third with an 83 on Faded Memories. Lowe remained second with $161,670.

"It won't make a difference," Lowe said about his third-round victory. "You can't look at it that way. We still have seven more rounds. It's going to be a race to the end. You just go day by day."

In steer wrestling, Wade Sumpter of Fowler, Colo., placed won with a 3.6-second run to move up from fifth to third in the standings with $106,532.

"You're always trying to be aggressive here, and the start is so important," Sumpter said. "The first night I got a good start and went after the steer too much and we kind of collided out there, and it turned out bad. Tonight, I just had to pin my ears back and go at 'em and be as fast as I could, because that's about all I have for the next seven nights."

Two-time world champion Dean Gorsuch of Gering, Neb., tops the standings with $116,067, followed by Ethen Touvenell of Napa, Calif., at $109,591. They failed to place in the top six in the round.

In team roping, header Erich Rogers of Round Rock, Ariz., and heeler Kory Koontz of Sudan, Texas, won in 3.9 seconds, and header Trevor Brazile of Decatur, Texas, and heeler Patrick Smith of Lipan, Texas, were second in 4.0 and remained in standings lead with $159,078 for Smith and $157,578 for Brazile.

Header Kaleb Driggers of Albany, Ga., who has earned $137,466, and heeler Jade Corkill of Fallon, Nev., who has made $133,375, are second after placing third in 4.3.

In all-around, defending world champion Brazile, who has won nine of the last 10 world all-around titles, widened his lead over runner-up Steven Dent of Mullen, Neb., during round three. Brazile has earned $273,302, and Dent has made $144,465.


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