MARTIN, Tenn. – Two of the traditional Ozark Region powers will be in action this weekend when the University of Tennessee at Martin rodeo team travels to Missouri Valley College for its season-opener.
The UT Martin men, who last season won the Ozark Region championship for the 28th time since 1976, are coming off a national No. 10 finish in 2012-13 – its fifth top-10 final rank since 2005. The men’s squad qualified for its 40th straight College National Finals Rodeo appearance under the direction of John Luthi, the 2013 National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association Coach of the Year.
UT Martin amassed 7,465 points last season, which was 3,185 points more than second-place Missouri Valley College. The men’s squad returns 16 members from 2012-13, including eight of the 10 who represented UT Martin at the CNFR (Clark Adcock, John Alley, Robert Joyce, Will Lummus, Clay Mitchell, Lane Mitchell, Ben Walker and Tyler Waltz).
The UT Martin women’s team finished fourth in the Ozark Region last season with 1,260 points, just 310 points behind Missouri Valley College for third place.
The UT Martin women return 15 members from last season, including both of the representatives at the CNFR (Natalie Fletcher and Mary Francis Gorsuch).
Action at the Missouri Valley College rodeo from Marshall, Mo. begins on Thursday, Sept. 26 and will run through Saturday, Sept. 28.