From crash to cash – Herrin regains top form in Omaha

OMAHA, Neb. (PRCA) – They make them tough in Oklahoma. Six weeks after Hunter Herrin’s truck hydroplaned off an Oklahoma highway, rolled three times and left him with a separated AC joint in his right shoulder, Herrin was out on the arena dirt at the CenturyLink Center taking a victory lap.

No hydroplaning for this trip. No crash. Just a nice pile of cash.

Herrin, of Apache, Okla., came within one-tenth of a second of breaking Cody Ohl’s tie-down roping arena record on Sept. 28 with a 6.9-second run in winning the second round of the $637,188 Justin Boots Championships.

After going without a paycheck since Dodge City, Kan., the first week in August, Herrin has collected three already this weekend – totaling an event-high $10,058 – and goes into the Sept. 29 finals day with a big boost of confidence.

“I had an injection after the accident and tried to compete in San Juan Capistrano (Calif.), but when the injection wore off, I couldn’t even lift my arm,” Herrin said. “I went to Pendleton (Ore.) and missed both calves. I didn’t do anything in Albuquerque (N.M.) last week.

“It really wasn’t until this Monday that I was able to practice and feel like I was most of the way back. Winning here … against this kind of field is a big confidence builder. I’ve had a lot of luck at Omaha (he won here in 2008) and this just feels great.”

Given the alternative Herrin faced – “that accident could have been much, much worse” – he is grateful merely to be back in the arena doing what he loves.

On the way back to fitness he contacted his cousin Robert Nunn, who is the defensive line coach with the New York Giants, and Nunn put him in touch with the Giants’ medical staff to get the best advice about accelerating rehab.

“I do believe things happen for a reason,” Herrin said. “This was just a path I had to go down.”

Home-state favorite Steve Dent put himself in position to win his fourth Justin Boots Championship in five years – his third straight in Omaha – thanks in no small part to his affinity for riding Harry Vold bucking stock.

Dent rode Kate’s Hot Sister for 87 points to win the second round. Earlier this year he had won in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Painted Coast, and in Dodge City, Kan., on Pillow Talk; all three were sired by 2010 PRCA Saddle Bronc Horse of the Year Painted Valley.

“They all feel about the same,” Dent said, “but this one bucked a little harder than I thought she would. I’d heard she was more of a hopper, but she bore left and finished strong. I don’t really pay attention, but I’m sure the crowd (12,724) was louder when I rode and the horses buck better when the crowd is noisy. They’re competitors, too, and they respond to the excitement.”

After being bucked off in the first round of the saddle bronc riding, Cody DeMoss made the best of a bad situation by riding Cervi Championship Rodeo’s Classic Equine High Life for 83 points and a win worth $5,107 in the second round.

“Last night was my fault,” DeMoss said. “I needed this. The horse I drew tonight was good. I’ve had her before … she’s been around a long time and 83 was about right, the best in this pen.”

The only repeat winners on this second night of the rodeo were bull rider Trevor Kastner of Ardmore, Okla., and barrel racer Mary Walker (13.64 seconds). Kastner  shared the win with three-time World Champion J.W. Harris on Sept. 27 and came back to post a rodeo-best score of 90 points on Three Hills Rodeo’s Hard Rock to win outright and enter the final day with $14,701 added to his accounts.

“The money helps,” Kastner said, in his understated way. “I barely made it into the field here in 12th place and was on the bubble to make the Wrangler NFR. I assured myself of a spot when I won last night and this win should give me some momentum.

“I didn’t have a clue about this bull (Hard Rock). I talked to guys and they said he was good, but I had no idea he’d be 90 points good.”

The team roping title was shared by Chad Masters/Clay O’Brien Cooper and Luke Brown/Martin Lucero in a time of 4.9 seconds with the top two-head average check going to Dustin Bird/Paul Eaves (the first-night winners) in 11.4 seconds.

Gabe Ledoux captured the steer wrestling title. His 3.5-second run was two-tenths better than fellow Louisianan Casey Martin’s, but Martin easily led the average with a two-head time of 7.6 seconds over former World Champions Dean Gorsuch (8.3) and Luke Branquinho (8.5).

ProRodeoLive.com’s webcast of the semifinals and finals will go on the air at 6:45 p.m. (CT) on Sept. 29.

Justin Boots Championships

CenturyLink Center, Omaha, Neb., Sept. 27-29

Bareback riding: First round: 1. J.R. Vezain, Cowley, Wyo., 87 points on Southwick’s Rocky Mountain Rodeo’s Hard Times, $5,107; 2. (tie) Steven Peebles, Redmond, Ore.; Winn Ratliff, Leesville, La., and Wes Stevenson, Lubbock, Texas, 85, $2,837 each; 5. Kaycee Feild, Payson, Utah, 83, $1,083; 6. Casey Colletti, Pueblo, Colo., 82, $774; 7. (tie) Will Lowe, Canyon, Texas, and Steven Dent, Mullen, Neb., 79 each; 9. Bobby Mote, Culver, Ore., 78; 10. Caleb Bennett, Morgan, Utah, 77; 11. Brian Bain, Culver, Ore., 75; 12. Matt Bright, Azle, Texas, 73. Second round: 1. Steven Dent, Mullen, Neb., 87 points on Harry Vold Rodeo’s Kate’s Hot Sister, $5,107; 2. Casey Colletti, Pueblo, Colo., 85, $3,869; 3. J.R. Vezain, Cowley, Wyo., 83, $2,785; 4. Caleb Bennett, Morgan, Utah, 82, $1,857; 5. (tie) Brian Bain, Culver, Ore., Wes Stevenson, Lubbock, Texas, and Bobby Mote, Culver, Ore., 80, $619 each; 8. Matt Bright, Azle, Texas, 79 9. Kaycee Feild, Payson, Utah, 78; 10. Winn Ratliff, Leesville, La., 77; 11. (tie) Steven Peebles, Redmond, Ore., and Will Lowe, Canyon, Texas, NS. Average: 1. J.R. Vezain, 170 points on two head, $5,107; 2. Casey Colletti, 167, $3,869; 3. Steven Dent, 166, $2,785; 4. Wes Stevenson, 165, $1,857; 5. Winn Ratliff, 162, $1,083; 6. Kaycee Feild, 161, $774; 7. Caleb Bennett, 159; 8. Bobby Mote, 158.

Steer wrestling: First round: 1. (tie) Casey Martin, Sulphur, La., and Luke Branquinho, Los Alamos, Calif., 3.9 seconds, $4,488 each; 3. Dean Gorsuch, Gering, Neb., 4.1, $2,785; 4. (tie) K.C. Jones, Decatur, Texas and Ethen Thouvenell, Napa, Calif., 4.7, $1,470 each; 6. Trevor Knowles, Mount Vernon, Ore., 5.2, $774; 7. Todd Suhn, Hermosa, S.D., 14.0; 8. Gabe Ledoux, Kaplan, La., 14.3; 9. Les Shepperson, Midwest, Wyo., 14.4; 10. Wade Sumpter, Fowler, Colo., 14.8; 11. Billy Bugenig, Ferndale, Calif., 16.4; 12. Matt Reeves, Cross Plains, Texas, 19.0. Second round: 1. Gabe Ledoux, Kaplan, La., 3.5 seconds, $5,107; 2. Casey Martin, Sulphur, La., 3.7, $3,869; 3. Wade Sumpter, Fowler, Colo., 3.9, $2,785; 4. Dean Gorsuch, Gering, Neb., 4.2, $1,857; 5. Matt Reeves, Cross Plains, Texas, 4.3, $1,083; 6. Luke Branquinho, Los Alamos, Calif., 4.6, $774; 7. Todd Suhn, Hermosa, S.D., 4.9; 8. Billy Bugenig, Ferndale, Calif., 5.1; 9.Les Shepperson, Midwest, Wyo., 5.7; 10. Ethen Thouvenell, Napa, Calif., 6.5; 11. Trevor Knowles, Mount Vernon, Ore., 7.9; 12. K.C. Jones, Decatur, Texas, 8.1. Average: 1.   Casey Martin, 7.6 seconds on two head, $5,107; 2. Dean Gorsuch, 8.3, $3,869; 3. Luke Branquinho, 8.5, $2,785; 4. Ethen Thouvenell, 11.2, $1,857; 5. K.C. Jones, 12.8, $1,083; 6. Trevor Knowles, 13.1, $774; 7. Gabe Ledoux, 17.8; 8. Wade Sumpter, 18.7.

Team roping: First round: 1. Dustin Bird, Cut Bank, Mont./Paul Eaves, Millsap, Texas, 5.1 seconds, $5,107 each; 2. Keven Daniel, Franklin, Tenn./Chase Tryan, Helena, Mont., 7.9, $3,869; 3. Travis Tryan, Billings, Mont./Jake Long, Coffeyville, Kan., 9.8, $2,785; 4. Derrick Begay, Seba Dalkai, Ariz./Cesar de la Cruz, Tucson, Ariz., 10.0, $1,857; 5. Kaleb Driggers, Albany, Ga./Jade Corkill, Fallon, Nev., 11.7, $1,083; 6. (tie) Erich Rogers, Round Rock, Ariz./Kory Koontz, Sudan, Texas; Luke Brown, Stephenville, Texas/Martin Lucero, Stephenville, Texas; Brock Hanson, Casa Grande, Ariz./Ryan Motes, Weatherford, Texas; Colby Lovell, Madisonville, Texas/Russell Cardoza, Terrebonne, Ore.; Clay Tryan, Billings, Mont./Travis Graves, Jay, Okla.; Chad Masters, Cedar Hill, Tenn./Clay O’Brien Cooper , Gardnerville, Nev., and Trevor Brazile, Decatur, Texas/Patrick Smith, Midland, Texas, NT. Second round: 1. (tie) Luke Brown, Stephenville, Texas/Martin Lucero, Stephenville, Texas, and Chad Masters, Cedar Hill, Tenn./Clay O’Brien Cooper, Gardnerville, Nev., 4.9 seconds, $4,488 each; 3. Derrick Begay, Seba Dalkai, Ariz./Cesar de la Cruz, Tucson, Ariz., 5.0, $2,785; 4. Trevor Brazile, Decatur, Texas/Patrick Smith, Midland, Texas, 5.3, $1,857; 5. (tie) Travis Tryan, Billings, Mont./Jake Long, Coffeyville, Kan., and Colby Lovell, Madisonville, Texas/Russell Cardoza, Terrebonne, Ore., 5.6, $928 each; 7. Dustin Bird, Cut Bank, Mont./Paul Eaves, Millsap, Texas, 6.3; 8. Kaleb Driggers, Albany, Ga./Jade Corkill, Fallon, Nev., 9.6; 9. Clay Tryan, Billings, Mont./Travis Graves, Jay, Okla., 10.8; 10. Keven Daniel, Franklin, Tenn./Chase Tryan, Helena, Mont., 11.0; 11. (tie) Erich Rogers, Round Rock, Ariz./Kory Koontz, Sudan, Texas, and Brock Hanson, Casa Grande, Ariz./Ryan Motes, Weatherford, Texas, NT. Average: 1. Dustin Bird/Paul Eaves, 11.4 seconds on two head, $5,107; 2. Derrick Begay/Cesar de la Cruz, 15.0, $3,869; 3. Travis Tryan/Jake Long, 15.4, $2,785; 4. Keven Daniel/Chase Tryan, 18.9, $1,857; 5. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 21.3, $1,083; 6. (tie) Luke Brown/Martin Lucero, and Chad Masters/Clay O’Brien Cooper, 4.9, $387 each. 8. Trevor Brazile, Decatur/Patrick Smith, 5.3.

Saddle bronc riding: First round: 1. Chad Ferley, Oelrichs, S.D., 86 points on JS Rodeo’s Bald Lie , $5,107; 2. (tie) Jake Wright, Milford, Utah, and Jesse Wright, Milford, Utah, 83, $3,327 each; 4. (tie) Isaac Diaz, Desdemona, Texas; Sterling Crawley, College Station, Texas; Cole Elshere, Faith, S.D., and Cort Scheer, Elsmere, Neb., 79, $928 each; 8. (tie) Cody Wright, Milford, Utah, and Taos Muncy, Corona, N.M., 78 each; 10. Jacobs Crawley, College Station, Texas, 73; 11. (tie) Bradley Harter, Weatherford, Texas, and Cody DeMoss, Heflin, La., NS. Second round: 1. Cody DeMoss, Heflin, La., 83 points on Cervi Championship Rodeo’s Classic Equine High Life Gal, $5,107; 2. Taos Muncy, Corona, N.M., 82, $3,869; 3. Jesse Wright, Milford, Utah, 81, $2,785; 4. Sterling Crawley, College Station, Texas, 80, $1,857; 5. Cort Scheer, Elsmere, Neb., 79, $1,083; 6. Cole Elshere, Faith, S.D., 78, $774; 7. (tie) Jake Wright, Milford, Utah, Bradley Harter, Weatherford, Texas,    Chad Ferley, Oelrichs, S.D., Jacobs Crawley, College Station, Texas, 74. 11. Isaac Diaz, Desdemona, Texas, 73; 12. Cody Wright, Milford, Utah, NS. Average: 1. Jesse Wright, 164 points on two head, $5,107; 2. (tie) Chad Ferley, and Taos Muncy, 160, $3,327 each; 4. Sterling Crawley, 159, $1,857; 5. Cort Scheer, 158, $1,083; 6. (tie) Cole Elshere, and Jake Wright, 157, $387 each; 8. Isaac Diaz, 152.

Tie-down roping: First round: 1. (tie) Clint Robinson, Spanish Fork, Utah, and Cody Ohl, Hico, Texas, 7.3 seconds, $4,488 each; 3. Justin Maass, Giddings, Texas, 7.6, $2,785; 4. Monty Lewis, Hereford, Texas, 7.9, $1,857; 5. Hunter Herrin, Apache, Okla., 8.8, $1,083; 6. Tuf Cooper, Decatur, Texas, 9.0, $774; 7. Shane Hanchey, Sulphur, La., 9.1; 8. Houston Hutto, Tomball, Texas, 9.3; 9. Ryan Jarrett, Comanche, Okla., 9.6; 10. Fred Whitfield, Hockley, Texas, 11.2; 11. Cory Solomon, Prairie View, Texas, 26.0; 12. Matt Shiozawa, Chubbuck, Idaho, NT. Second round: 1. Hunter Herrin, Apache, Okla., 6.9 seconds, $5,107; 2. Ryan Jarrett, Comanche, Okla., 7.2, $3,869; 3. Cory Solomon, Prairie View, Texas, 7.4, $2,785; 4. Monty Lewis, Hereford, Texas, 7.5, $1,857; 5. Tuf Cooper, Decatur, Texas, 8.5, $1,083; 6. (tie) Fred Whitfield, Hockley, Texas, and Shane Hanchey, Sulphur, La., 8.9, $387 each; 8. Clint Robinson, Spanish Fork, Utah, 9.2; 9. Matt Shiozawa, Chubbuck, Idaho, 9.9;  10. Houston Hutto, Tomball, Texas, 10.1; 11. Justin Maass, Giddings, Texas, 17.6; 12. Cody Ohl, Hico, Texas, NT. Average: 1. Monty Lewis, 15.4 seconds on two head, $5,107; 2. Hunter Herrin, 15.7, $3,869; 3. Clint Robinson, 16.5, $2,785; 4. Ryan Jarrett, 16.8, $1,857; 5. Tuf Cooper, 17.5, $1,083; 6. Shane Hanchey, 18.0, $774; 7. Houston Hutto, 19.4; 8. Fred Whitfield, 20.1.

Barrel racing: First round: 1. Mary Walker, Ennis, Texas, 13.63 seconds, $5,107; 2. Kaley Bass, Davenport, Fla., 13.93, $3,869; 3. Lindsay Sears, Nanton, Alberta, 13.94, $2,785; 4. Lisa Lockhart, Oelrichs, S.D., 14.03, $1,857; 5. Sherry Cervi, Marana, Ariz., 14.08; 6. Christina Richman, Glendora, Calif., 14.21; 7. Benette Little, Springer, Okla., 14.22; 8. Kelli Tolbert, Hooper, Utah, 14.33; 9. Brittany Pozzi, Victoria, Texas, 14.66; 10. Lee Rust, Stephenville, Texas, 18.90; 11. Carlee Pierce, Stephenville, Texas, 19.10; 12. Nikki Steffes, Vale, S.D., 19.13. Second round: 1. Mary Walker, Ennis, Texas, 13.64 seconds, $4,097; 2. Carlee Pierce, Stephenville, Texas, 13.84, $2,104; 3. Lindsay Sears, Nanton, Alberta, 13.86, $1,433; 4. Sherry Cervi, Marana, Ariz., 13.95, $761; 5. Kaley Bass, Davenport, Fla., 14.07; 6. Benette Little, Springer, Okla., 14.10; 7. Brittany Pozzi, Victoria, Texas, 14.14; 8. Lisa Lockhart, Oelrichs, S.D., 14.21; 9. (tie) Christina Richman, Glendora, Calif., and Lee Rust, Stephenville, Texas, 14.22; 11. Kelli Tolbert, Hooper, Utah, 18.90; 12. Nikki Steffes, Vale, S.D., 19.34. Average: 1. Mary Walker, 27.27 seconds on two runs, $1,885; 2. Lindsay Sears, 27.80, $918; 3. Kaley Bass, 28.00, $672; 4. Sherry Cervi, 28.03, $448; 5. Lisa Lockhart, 28.24; 6. Benette Little, 28.32; 7. Christina Richman, 28.43; 8. Brittany Pozzi, 28.80.

Bull riding: First round: 1. (tie) Trevor Kastner, Ardmore, Okla., on Mo Betta Rodeo’s All the Kings Men, and J.W. Harris, Mullin, Texas, 86 points on Dakota Rodeo’s My Space, 86 points $4,488 each; 3. Cody Teel, Kountze, Texas, 85, $2,785; 4. Seth Glause, Cheyenne, Wyo., 83, $1,857; 5. Cody Samora, Cortez, Colo., 81, $1,083; 6. Trey Benton III, Rock Island, Texas, 78, $774; 7. Beau Schroeder, China, Texas, 77; 8. (tie) Brett Stall, Detroit Lakes, Minn.; Cody Whitney, Sayre, Okla.; Tate Stratton, Kellyville, Okla.; Ardie Maier, Timber Lake, S.D.; and Kanin Asay, Powell, Wyo., NT. Second round: 1. Trevor Kastner, Ardmore, Okla., 90 points on Three Hills Rodeo’s Hard Rock, $5,107; 2. J.W. Harris, Mullin, Texas, 87, $3,869; 3. Cody Whitney, Sayre, Okla., 86, $2,785; 4. Ardie Maier, Timber Lake, S.D., 85, $1,857; 5. Cody Teel, Kountze, Texas, 80, $1,083; 6. Brett Stall, Detroit Lakes, Minn., 79, $774; 7. Beau Schroeder, China, Texas, 76; 8. (tie) Tate Stratton, Kellyville, Okla., Cody Samora, Cortez, Colo., Seth Glause, Cheyenne, Wyo., Kanin Asay, Powell, Wyo., and Trey Benton III, Rock Island, Texas, NS. Average: 1. Trevor Kastner, 176 points on two head, $5,107; 2. J.W. Harris, 173, $3,869; 3. Cody Teel, 165, $2,785; 4. Beau Schroeder, 153, $1,857;  5. Cody Whitney, 86 on one, $1,083; 6. Ardie Maier, 85, $774; 7. Seth Glause, 83; 8. Cody Samora, 81.

Total payoff: $637,188. Stock contractors: Beutler & Son Rodeo Company, Burns Rodeo Company, Cervi Championship Rodeo, Dakota Rodeo Company, Harry Vold Rodeo, Harvey Northcott Rodeo, J Bar J, JS Rodeo, Mo Betta Rodeo Company, Mosbrucker Rodeos, Rafter H Rodeo Livestock Company, Southwick’s Rocky Mountain Rodeo Company, Sutton Rodeos and Three Hills Rodeo. Rodeo secretary: Kathy McCloy. Officials: Joe Bob Locke, Steve Knowles, Mike Todd and Marty Jandreau. Timers: Mandy Pickett and Kim Sutton. Announcer: Roger Mooney and Boyd Polhamus. Specialty act: Justin Rumford. Bullfighters: Dusty Tuckness and Cory Wall. Clown/barrelman: Justin Rumford. Flankman: Various. Chute bosses: Binion Cervi and Andy Hilton. Pickup men: Chase Cervi and Tyler Robertson. Photographer: Kerri Allardyce.