NO. 10 UT MARTIN EQUESTRIAN OPENS SPRING SLATE WITH TWO HOME MEETS THIS WEEKEND
February 14, 2018
MARTIN, Tenn. – After 14 weeks away from official competition, the No. 10 ranked University of Tennessee at Martin equestrian squad is ready to begin its spring season with a pair of home competitions this weekend. The Skyhawks will host No. 7 TCU at 9 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 16 before squaring off against Ole Miss in an 11 a.m. exhibition on Sunday, Feb. 18.
UT Martin, who yesterday earned a spot in the nation’s top-10 rankings for the 10th consecutive week, will look to build off a highly successful fall season. The Skyhawks originally entered the national rankings on Oct. 10, marking the first time since November 2015 that UT Martin had achieved national top-10 status.
The Skyhawks will be looking to avenge an early season 8-7 loss to TCU, as UT Martin fell to then-No. 8 TCU on Oct. 6 in Dover, Del. In that matchup, the Skyhawks held a 5-3 advantage in Hunt Seat but were narrowly edged out 5-2 in Western. Randi LaChance (87 in equitation on the flat), Abbie Hopkins (84 in equitation over fences) and Tess Baumann (73 in horsemanship) each dialed up MOP performances against the Frogs.
UT Martin is enjoying quite a youth movement this season, as underclassmen have notched 30 of the team’s 41 head-to-head victories (18 from freshmen, 12 from sophomores). That trend has continued with MOP’s as freshmen (six) and sophomores (two) have combined for eight of the squad’s 10 MOP accolades.
LaChance and Monika Zoromski share the team lead with three team points apiece in equitation on the flat. Hopkins and LaChance have each snagged one MOP while LaChance’s 79.6 scoring average leads the way for the Skyhawks.
In equitation over fences, Hopkins accounts for a team-highs in head-to-head victories (four), MOP’s (two) and scoring average (81.6). The freshman out of Seekonk, Mass. chalked up NCEA and United Equestrian Conference Rider of the Month honors in the event for the month of October.
Baumann and Bobbie Piddock have each secured three team points in horsemanship. Baumann also paced UT Martin with two MOP’s and a 72.9 scoring average this fall, capturing the UEC Rider of the Month title in horsemanship for the month of October.
In reining, senior Madeline Williams has garnered a team-best four wins to go along with one MOP. Noel Meadows also picked up an MOP while leading the Skyhawks with a 69.1 scoring average, leading to a nod as the UEC Reining Rider of the Month in November.