K-State to Host IHSA Western Shows Saturday

MANHATTAN, Kan. - The Kansas State equestrian team will take a break from Varsity competition this weekend as the Western squad will host seven teams from across the region Saturday at Fox Creek Farm in a morning and afternoon IHSA Western show. The morning session is set to begin at 9 a.m., while the afternoon session will begin at approximately 12:00 p.m.

"This weekend will be a great opportunity to get some different girls in the arena and see where they stand after the past few weeks of practice," said head coach Casie Lisabeth. "The great thing about IHSA is that we get the opportunity to show quite a few riders, and most of them get to perform twice in one day which really helps them see improvement."

Overall, 10 different riders will compete this weekend for the Wildcats over three different categories. Competing in the Reining discipline for K-State will be sophomore Alayna Warner and freshman Libby Robinson. Warner has one Varsity exhibition victory on the season, while Robinson will see her first action of the season at this weekend's shows.

In Open Horsemanship the Wildcats will be lead in the arena by a pair of seniors in Kyla Copple, who has one Varsity exhibition win on the season, and Alise Dykstra. They will be joined by a pair of sophomores in Rebecca Wallisch, who is 2-1 in Varsity exhibition competition this season, and Tiana Shelton, who has one Varsity exhibition victory on the year. Rounding out the Open Horsemanship lineup for the Wildcats will be freshman McKenzie True.

K-State will also have riders competing in the Advanced Horsemanship, where it will feature three riders. The Wildcats will look to have a good showing from senior Nicole Keenan, who has yet to show this season. Sophomore Jennifer Keefe and freshman Karen Riley will round out the competition for K-State, as both riders have yet to compete this year. 

Competing against the Wildcats this weekend will be riders from Southern Illinois University East, Missouri State University, Truman State University, Augustana College, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, Black Hawk College and Iowa State University.

Six different levels of Western riding comprise the IHSA format from beginner through Open (World Show qualifying rider) which has Horsemanship and Reining. Riders compete individually for a first through sixth placing. Team designate one rider per level as a point rider for their team and their points are added up to declare a "High Point Team" or "Reserve High Point Team," which are awarded to the top two point-earning teams at the show.

On an individual basis, riders accumulate points from season to season in all divisions but the open division to determine postseason consideration. Acquiring 35 points in a respective division earns a rider a trip to regionals, where riders will then compete for the top two placings in their class to go on to semifinals, as well as graduation to the next level in IHSA competition. At semifinals, a rider must place in first through fourth to move on to nationals, which will be held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Ky., May 6-9. However, open riders have to start their points over each year as there is no division to point up.

Results from this weekend's shows will be posted as they become available on kstatesports.com.

- k-statesports.com -