10th annual Trojan Stampede opens Thursday - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

10th annual Trojan Stampede opens Thursday

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As part of a special homecoming weekend at Troy University, collegiate rodeo teams from all over the nation will converge to take part in the annual Trojan Stampede hosted by the Troy University Rodeo team at the Pike County Cattlemen's Complex beginning Thursday night. 

This year the team celebrates 10 years in existence, and the stampede also marks the 10th installment of the event.   As a part of the weekend's activities, all rodeo alumni are welcomed back and will celebrate with events throughout the weekend. 

Any K-12 student who wears their school shirt or colors will receive free admission Thursday night. The opening ceremony will feature a 4-H Riding Club as well as School Board Member Chris Wilkes delivering the invocation. The Brundidge High School ROTC will present the colors and Melanie Sims, a senior at Troy and 2009 graduate of Charles Henderson, will deliver the opening National Anthem.  

Friday night will welcome some of Troy's international students to carry their home flags during the grand entry while the National Anthem will be delivered by Troy University student Raliff Jordan.  All students who attend the rodeo on Friday night can register for a $500 book scholarship donated by the Alumni Association - just stop by the welcome tent and register for the drawing. 

Saturday will feature the playing of the National Anthem by Troy Police Department Detective Michael O'Hara, as well as the invocation by local pastor Rick Hayes. All law enforcement, fire and rescue personnel, and military – active and retired - will be recognized.   

Any additional volunteer or community groups wishing to receive group rates are asked to contact ask@troy.edu or rodeo@troy.edu.  

Last year's event welcomed a champion in the barrel racing category, as well as consistent results from the Trojan Spurs in goat tying, team roping and breakaway roping.  

Josey Owens highlighted the 2011 weekend, winning the barrel racing title after posting a 16.26 final round to win the short-go and place second in the average.  

Kassandra Smith and Lanie Culligan placed third and fourth, respectively, in goat tying, and have both found their strides in the event thus far in 2012.  

The duo of Lane Taylor and Nelson Wyatt highlighted last year's men's side of the competition, posting a fourth place finish in team roping after a total time of 25.7 seconds.  

Through four events this fall season, the Troy women's team holds a 273 point advantage in the Ozark Region standings over Southern Arkansas, while the men sit tenth with 420 points in a region dominated by Tennessee-Martin.  

The women enter this weekend's home event with 1,133 points thanks to a solid four events, claiming team titles in two of those to go along with a finish of second and sixth.  

The duo of the two Smith's on the women's side, Kassandra and Kesia, have 50 points to their names in the team roping event to enter the weekend in 13th in the category.  

Morgan Sellars, a newcomer to the Troy team, enters with 140 points and a seventh place standing in barrel racing within striking distance of the top five.

Another duo of newcomers in Kelsey Kennemer and Anna Niewoehner, both hold a standing in the top ten in breakaway roping. Kennemer, the former two time All-Around champion in the state of Tennessee, sits separated from first by 122 points behind Murray State's Taylor Smith. Niewoehner clings to a tie for eighth in a highly-competitive race for the second through 13th place positions.  

Kassandra Smith, who has been the statistical highlight of the Troy women's team thus far, maintains a 65 point advantage in goat tying over Southern Arkansas' Loni Pearce. Smith has finished second twice and third once to lead the region in the event with 360 points. Kesia Smith and Lanie Culligan sit closely-contested in eighth and ninth, while Kennemer holds a tie for 12th with 60 points.

The men enter the home event with a tenth place standing in the Ozark Region after accumulating 420 points thus far this season. Tennessee-Martin holds a demanding lead over Missouri Valley by more than 1,000 points after dominating the region this fall.  

Albert McBride, after racking up a finish in the short-go once this season, sits tied for 13th in the steer wrestling category with 80 points.  

The duo of Trojan Spur Zack Mabry and Tennessee-Martin Skyhawk Ben Walker, have experienced consistent results in the team roping event and hold a second place standing heading into the final event before the spring schedule. The duo has totaled 285 points, but trail the first place duo of John Alley and Clark Adcock by more than 400 points.  

Action is slated to begin each night at 7 p.m. with gates opening at 6. Advanced tickets are $5 for children and $8 for adults and can be purchased early by calling 1-800-414-5756, or emailing ask@troy.edu. Tickets at the gate will be $7 for children and $10 for adults. Any individual who shows his/her ticket stub at Santa Fe Cattle Company during the rodeo weekend will also receive a 10% off coupon for their meal.  

Troy students will be admitted free with proof of ID, and door prizes will be given to those spotted wearing Troy apparel.  

INFORMATION SOURCE: Troy Athletics Dept.

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