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  • Paul Cooley


For the second consecutive night a capacity crowd filled the stands for the final performance of this year’s 71st annual Gerry Fire Department’s PRCA and were treated to some of the best rodeo action of the week as the cowboys and cowgirls had their final shot at taking home a share of the $45,000 prize money.

The saddle bronc event featured two riders, Jesse Kirby of Dodge City, Kansas, and Wyatt Denny, Minden, Nevada, each scoring 75 points on their broncs, leaving them just two points short of the high ride of the week. Likewise, the bareback event had the same results with Tim Kent, Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, and Wyatt Denny, Minden, Nevada, each scoring 75 points, far behind the opening performance ride of 86 points by Jake Brown, Hillsboro, Texas, possibly the highest scoring ride in that event in recent Gerry records.

The Painted Pony bulls were again in top form as only Corey Atwell of Moravian Falls, North Carolina, able to stay aboard for the required eight seconds. This means there were only three successful bull rides for the week.

Close competition was again the pattern in the girls’ barrel racing with eight girls circling the barrels in less than sixteen seconds. Cassie Green, Shakopee, Minnesota, posted the evening’s fastest time at 15.18 seconds, which earned her a third place finish for the week.

Jessie McPike, Bedford, Indiana, took over the lead in the steer wrestling in the first go-round as he threw his steer in a very quick 4.3 seconds. He followed that with a 4.6 time on his second steer for an aggregate time of 8.9 seconds to win the event.

Rob Toth, Wolcott, Connecticut, and Tye Eglin, Gloversville, New York, showed the crowd how team roping should be done as they posted times of 7.0 and 7.1 for an aggregate total of 14.1 seconds.

In the tie-down roping, J.R. Myers, Felton, Pennsylvania, tied his two calves in 9.4 and 10.0 for a very fast total of 19.1 seconds.

Rodeo chairman Tom Atwell terms the week’s activities one of the best in recent years with excellent crowds and perfect weather along with a record number of contestants and an all-time high in prize money. Head chef and fire department president Bruce Gustafson reported that they served approximately 3000 barbeque beef dinners.

Due to the length of the final performance, the winners of each event and the amount they won will not be available until Monday. Those winners will also receive a set of Montana Silversmith spurs and the All-around cowboy for the week will be named.

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