CANYON, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — The West Texas A&M University Equestrian Team is celebrating a win as the team won first place on both Nov. 4 and 5 at the hunt seat competition at Tarleton State University.

“We showed up strong for our first away competition in hunt seat this season,” said coach Maggie Murphy. “Each rider demonstrated great horsemanship and sportsmanship over the two days of competition, and their hard work and dedication have set them up for success for the rest of the season.”

The competition at Tarleton, officials detailed, marked the third event of the season for the WT team as they are set to compete next at the WT Equestrian Center for the western competition on Nov. 18 and 19.

“WT Equestrian is known as a force to be reckoned with, and I am beyond proud that we are proving it yet again as the season opens,” said co-coach Julia Bastian. “We practice hard at home, and it’s a good feeling for the students to see that their hard work is paying off. I am very excited to see everyone’s progress as the season goes on.”

During each contest, according to officials, riders compete on “unfamiliar horses” which have been assigned to them through a random draw. Points are then garnered by the teams at each contest through February in preparation for the regional competition and then the semi-final contest in late March and April. The national championships take place on May 2 to 5 in North Carolina.

The WT team, who competes through the Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association, took first place at their season opener on Oct. 7 and 8 at North Central Texas College in Gainesville and went on to win first at the hunt seat competition on Oct. 21 and 22 at the WT Equestrian Center, officials added.

Johanna Anderson, a freshman psychology major from Wray, Colo. was the high-point rider on Oct. 21 while Morgan Clinesmith, a senior equine industry and business major from Cimarron, Kan. was the high-point rider, and Elizabeth Dreyer, a sophomore agricultural business and economics major from Richmond, Va., was reserve high-point rider on the Oct. 22 phase of the contest.

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