SHAWNEE, OK – After one of the most incredible waves of competition, The IFYR (International Finals Youth Rodeo) capped a dominant event by crowning 11 new youth athletes 2022 IFYR Champions. The Event hosted in Shawnee, Oklahoma is one the richest youth rodeos in history, dishing out $250,000 over six-days and featuring over 965 entries from 32 different states.
Kacey Bass (Brenham, Texas) locked down the All-Around Cowgirl after earning more than $5,704 in the event. The Texas cowgirl ran supreme and notched the number six spot in pole bending with a 62.703 average along with a lightning fast 49.103 average on three in the barrel racing.
Kase Busby (Leesville, LA) earned more than $4,755 during the six-day event to take the All-Around Cowboy title. Busby earned a 13.1 average on three to win the steer wrestling, edging out Ryan Martin’s (Sulphur, LA) 13.2 average. On top of earning the No. 3 position in team roping alongside fellow Louisianan Will Thibodeaux (Elmer, LA), he placed eight in the tie-down roping with 33.6 average on three head.
Texas bareback rider Connor Griffith (Skullbone, TX) landed in the final round after a 71.0 ride in the first go and a 61.0 ride in the second go alongside Brayze Schill (West Columbia, TX) and Quintonn Lunsford (Mccune, KS). Griffith topped Schill’s and Lunsford’s’s averages after earning a 73.0 in the final round to land the championship position.
The team roping duo Cole Smith (Amazonia, MO) and Catcher Gasperson (Decatur, TX) earned a position in the short round after coming in the No. 4 position. Smith and Gasperson matched up against Zane Collins (Talihina, OK) and Nicholas Lovins (Canadian, TX) along with the Louisiana team of Busby and Thibodeaux. The dominate wave of team roping youth ended with Smith and Gasperson recording a 6.2 final round run to log a 20.1 average, besting Collins and Lovin’s 20.8 second average and Busby and Thibodeaux’s 23.3 second average.
Being the only saddle bronc rider to cover two of three rides, Wyatt Lavergne (Sulphur, LA) exhausted the competition earning the high-marked-ride in two out of three rounds at the IFYR, to win the event with a 131.0 average. Cooper Lane (Keller, TX) was a distant second place with a 77.0 average.
Breakaway roper Zaili Saculla (Bryan, TX) delivered a powerful performance when her string broke away from her saddle horn at the 2.9 second mark in the final round to end the event with a 7.3-second average on three. Saculla defeated native Oklahoman Maci Harvey’s (Mead, OK) 7.5-second average and Ruby Espey’s (Lone Jack, MO) 8.4-second average to earn the top time.
After earning one of the fastest times of the week’s in the second-go with a 7.5-second run, Cash Fuesz (Eureka, KS) backed into the box in the final round knotted up in a tie with Bryce Henderson (Del Rio, TX). The Kansas tie-down roper earned the number one spot in the average after notching an 8.4-second time and besting Henderson’s 27.1 average by three-tenth of a second.
With an advancement to the Final Round courtesy of her two fastest event times of the week, Alissa Flores (Loredo, TX) went into the final round in the top spot and was not going to let it go. Flores opened the final round with a swift 16.32 second run which was followed by All-Around Cowgirl Kacey Bass’s 16.312 second time. Bass’s run was not enough to top Flores’s 48.973 average. Flores left Shawnee with the barrel racing title and over $2700 in earnings.
Tate Pollmeier (Fort Scott, KS) was unstoppable in the Bull Riding. The defending IFYR Bull Riding Champion was two of 10 bull riders to cover two rides. The Kansas Cowboy took home his second IFYR title after recording a 71-point score in round one and an impressive 80.5-point score in round two. The Fort Scott Cowboy earned an overall 151.5 average on three.
Haiden Thompson (Marion, TX) secured the goat tying title after her 8.3 and 6.9-second run in the long rounds. Thompson’s 6.9-second run in the final round, marked the best time in two of three rounds. Thompson topped Kayleah Hurst’s (Slick, OK) 25.0 average.
In the pole bending, Kenna Mclemore (Gracemont, OK) and Camree Slavin (Canadian, TX) found themselves in a shootout. The two ladies expertly navigated the course as Mclemore’s 20.279 in in the final round would push her to the top of the leaderboard with a 61.055 average, distancing runner-up Slavin.
All results from the event can be found here.
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