Reeves headed to national collegiate rodeo finals
By Carolyn B. Edwards BCC Staff Writer
Photo courtesy SWTJC
Regional collegiate rodeo champion Rozlyn Reeves drives for another win on Ranger to qualify for the national finals in June.
Help send Bandera County’s own Rozlyn Reeves to the Collegiate National Finals Rodeo! Send your tax deductible donation to
Nat'l's Rodeo Team, C/O SWTJC,
2401 Garner Field Road,
Uvalde, TX 78801.
When it comes down to it, it's just one woman, one horse and a ticking clock. When the dust cleared at the final rodeo in the college level this spring, Rozlyn Reeves of Pipe Creek had qualified to compete at the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyoming, June 15-21. She will compete in two events, barrel racing and goat tying.
Reeves and her horse, Ranger, earned the Champion Barrel Racers title for the Southern Region National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association this year and accumulated enough points to qualify in the goat tying event as well.
The achievement is the result of a hard year of competition in 10 college rodeos throughout the southern region, which includes Texas and half of Louisiana.
"What makes this extra-special is that Ranger was born, raised and trained on our place in Pipe Creek," said Reeves, "as was his momma which I rode all the way through junior high and high school and went to state every year.
"Ranger was a baby when we started hauling him right along with his momma to give him the experience, and, boy, has that paid off," said Reeves.
The personable cowgirl has been rodeoing for almost as much of her life as Ranger has. "I've been riding ever since I could hold myself up in a saddle," she said.
She graduated from Bandera High School in 2012 and went to Southwest Texas Junior College in Uvalde on a full ride scholarship thanks to her successful rodeo vocation up to that point. She had competed in High School Rodeo Association events, 4H and other youth rodeos, as well as open and pro rodeos whenever possible, supported by proud parents Joe and Billie Reeves.
Her three-year program at SWTJC includes a major in business management, which will no doubt come in handy as she manages her own outstanding rodeo career.
Reeves is very thankful to SWTJC for providing her scholarship and the chance to represent the school in college rodeos.
Under the outstanding direction of noted college rodeo coach Roy Angermiller, the SWTJC girls' team and one team roping team has qualified for the national competition.
The team will be doing fundraisers for the next few weeks in order to offset the costs of fees and travel. Reeves will be grateful to any Bandera County supporters who can make a tax deductible donation to the cause. Send a check to: Nat'l's Rodeo Team, C/O SWTJC, 2401 Garner Field Road, Uvalde, 78801.
Both of Reeves' events are rodeo staples for female competitors.
Goat tying is a less than 10-second event that combines precision, speed and strategy. The objective is for the competitor to ride her horse toward a goat tied at the end of the arena, dismount, tie three of the goat's legs together and raise the goat off the ground. It is an event growing in popularity, attracting more female competitors to the sport.
Barrel racing is probably the better known female rodeo event. This race against the clock takes the rider around three barrels in the arena. National championship times hover around 14 seconds. The cloverleaf pattern must be cleanly negotiated. Tipped barrels result in penalty points and a failure to follow the pattern results in a no score. The Women's Professional Rodeo Association is the oldest professional organization in the barrel racing industry. The WPRA began holding sanctioned barrel races in 1948.
Rodeo is a year-round sport, Reeves explained, and she and her horses ride and practice almost every day. "I'm solely responsible for their care, vet bills, shoeing, whatever," she said. "We spend about three hours a day working out."
Thankfully, college rodeo champions win cash prizes. "It really helps with the diesel bill," she said. "I've been real blessed to be able to win [as many rodeos as I have], and I just take each rodeo, one at a time."
In addition to hard work and consistency, staying focused has been one of the keys to Reeves' success. Rodeo is not immune to the trash talk so popular in other sports. Other competitors and coaches will do their best to create a mental distraction. "I work not to let the negative comments get to me," Reeves said.
Following the national competition, Reeves will look ahead to the future. "The nationals are a big honor. Qualifying proves I can compete at a higher level and I plan to get my pro card soon," said Reeves.