Golden Eagles Win High Point Team Saturday;
Advance Three Riders to IHSA Zone Championships
CROOKSTON, Minn . – The University of Minnesota Crookston hunt seat equestrian team finished out the 2015-16 Intercollegiate Horse Show Association regular-season with a home show Sat., Feb. 27. The Golden Eagles were named High Point Team for the show, while Selena Young (Fr., Plymouth, Minn.) was named High Point Rider. Young was tied with her older sister Kayla Young, a rider for North Dakota State University, but Selena Young would win the Head-to-Head ride-off with her sister to win High Point Rider. The Golden Eagles had three riders, including Young, Megan Motter (Fr., Cooperstown, N.D.) and Monika Frame (So., Polson, Mont.) advance to the IHSA Zone Championships.
“Even though we fell short of bringing home the title of Regional Champion, I could not have bene happier with how each individual rode,” said Head Coach Kayla Krueger. “This young team of riders has shown that they are a forced to be reckoned with and I cannot wait to see what they bring to the competitive ring next season.”
Saturday’s competition started on a very high note with Emily Steeley (Sr., Portsmouth, R.I.) placing a strong second in Open Equitation over Fences and Monika Frame (So., Polson, Mont.) coming in right behind in third. Young blew the competition away with a beautiful fence course on one of UMC’s tougher draws for horses on the weekend in a deep class of Intermediate Fence riders. Mazie Pini (Fr., Grayslake, Ill.) was not far behind and finished with a solid third in the competitive class. Marta Dean (Fr., White Bear Lake, Minn.) placed fourth in her section of Novice Equitation over Fences.
The Open Equitation on the Flat class could not have gone better for UMC’s riders. The Golden Eagles had all riders finish in the top six. Steeley earned a second-place finish in the class, Frame placed fourth and Pini sixth. Rhiannon Nicoll (So., Rice, Minn.) had a beautiful equitation ride in the Intermediate on the Flat portion, placing third. UMC got several performance in Novice Equitation on the Flat. Dean placed third in her class, while Karcyn Pleune (Sr., Borup, Minn.) and Young both also had flawless rides, winning their sections. Megan Motter (Fr., Cooperstown, N.D.) had a beautiful ride in her Advanced Walk Trot Canter class to take the win. Lastly, Emma Howey (Fr., Rutland, N.D.) and Marissa Mancillas (Fr., Brooksville, Fla.) represented well in Walk Trot with Mancillas finishing second and Howey fourth.
The Golden Eagles fell just short Saturday of claiming the Regional Title, finishing second to earn Reserve High Point Team in the Region.
Sunday, UMC competed at the IHSA Regionals. UMC had four riders qualified to compete for the competition. Steeley had beautiful rides in Open Equitation on the Flat and Open Equitation over Fences, however she fell short of moving on to IHSA Zones. Frame had two strong performances in the Intermediate over Fences and Intermediate on the Flat classes, taking the win for both. Young also pulled off two first-place finishes in the Novice Equitation on the Flat and Novice Equitation over Fences. Lastly, Motter had a strong ride on a challenging draw to win her class of Advanced Walkt Trot Canter. Motter, Young and Frame will advance on to the Zone 7 Championships that will be held at West Texas A&M University April 19 in Canyon, Texas.
Photo: Rhiannon Nicoll