Panola College rodeo team was ready when it came time for the first NIRA Southern region rodeo September 25, 26 at the Panola County Cattleman’s Arena. The impressive amount of fans, and beautiful weather made very exciting competition.
The great individual efforts from some freshman players helped the men’s team to a 3rd place finish, and the women’s team to a 2nd place finish. The Southern Region consist of 14 University’s and Jr. Colleges , the top 2 teams in the region move on to the CNFR held each year in Casper, WY.
Sophomore, and last season CNFR qualifier Gannon Ivy, was in usual riding form winning 4th place in the bull riding. Gannon comes to Panola from Hampton, Ark. He is working on a degree in Petroleum Technologies.
Winning 1st place in the team roping was the duo of, Laramie and Colton Johnson. The very fast time of 5.4 seconds was posted early in the rodeo and held through the weekend. Laramie and Colton came to Panola College from Shreveport, La. They are twins that are expected to be really in the midst of the regional race all season. R.D. Carter and Zach Moore made a contribution by posting a time of 6.8 seconds to win 5th place , while sophomore Colton Hairgrove put up the points on the board with a 9th place finish.
In the breakaway event it was stand out Laramie Johnson, with the win again with a time of 2.7 seconds. Laramie’s great performance this weekend moves her to an early lead in both her individual events and to number 1 in the cowgirls all around race. Taylor Gooch made a great return performance, after taking a couple years off from competition, and posted a time of 3.2 seconds and a 6th place finish.
Bareback rider Kole Chandler was recruited to Panola College from Mississippi. Kole is a first year student with a nursing degree as his goal. Kole made a very wild and exciting ride to win the bareback riding with a 76 point score. Kole is a two event cowboy competing in the bull riding as well. Chandler is expected to be a force in both his chosen events all season long.
The Panola College rodeo team will travel to Uvalde, TX October 1-3 for the second of ten regional competitions. The third competition will be held in Pittsburg TX. October 9-10.