Jun 6, 2012 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports EditorFour Central Wyoming College cowboys are going to make their debuts at the College National Finals Rodeo Sunday through Saturday at the Casper Events Center.
Stetson Jorgensen, Colton Miller, Tyler Williams and Charlie Kogianes locked down spots for the week-long rodeo a month and a half ago in the Central Rocky Mountain Region.
Jorgensen won the steer wrestling championship, and Miller took the saddle bronc title.
Williams placed second in bull riding, while Kogianes was third in saddle bronc riding.
"It will be good experience for them, if nothing else," CWC rodeo coach Rick Smith said. "It will be interesting to see how they react to the big stage."
CWC's Corbin Nicholls finished fourth in the team roping standings in the region, just one spot from qualification.
"That would have been big for us," said Smith if CWC would have five CWC cowboys in the CNFR.
The top three rodeo athletes in each event and the top two men's and women's teams from the 11 regions in the United States qualify for the CNFR. There will be more than 400 rodeo athletes going for individual titles.
Competitors at the CNFR have three preliminary rounds.
The top 12 advance to the finals Saturday night.
(The CWC women's rodeo preview for the CNFR will be published Thursday.)
"It takes a lot to win a regional title in this region," Smith said. "They will need some luck in the draw in Casper. We will just see how it goes." Jorgensen tied with Chadron State's Miles Spickelmier for the steer wrestling title at 425 points. "I don't think that anything will bother Stetson," Smith said. "He will go there and compete well. He is a great athlete."
Miller scored 815 points in saddle bronc for his title. Gillette's Travis Nelson placed second in 790 points.
"Colton is one of the most talented kids that we have ever had in the program," Smith said. "His future is bright in saddle bronc riding."
Williams had the regional lead after the fall season in bull riding, but he struggled in the spring season and placed second.
Williams had a bad shoulder in the spring. "I think that Tyler will be healed up now, which will be the first time all spring he has been healed up," Smith said.
Williams finished second in the region scoring 420 points. Casper's Joshua Harrell finished third at 415 points. Laramie's Loncey Johnson placed first (445 points).
"Tyler has a lot of talent," Smith said.
"He can ride all of his bulls to win it. Riding all three bulls at the CNFR is a pretty stiff challenge."
Kogianes beat Laramie's Gus Thoreson in saddle bronc riding for the third spot from the region.
Kogianes put together 725 points, and Thoreson finished with 710.
"Charlie has come on great this spring," Smith said. "He was under the gun to make it. He had to win what he did at the last rodeo in order to make the finals."
Get your copy of The Ranger online, every day! If you are a current print subscriber and want to also access dailyranger.com online (there is nothing more to purchase) including being able to download The Mining and Energy Edition, click here. Looking to start a new online subscription to dailyranger.com (even if it is for just one day)? Access our secure SSL encrypted server and start your subscription now by clicking here.