April 16, 2014
WACO, Texas – After a third place finish at the Big 12 Championship, the Kansas State equestrian team looks to end the season with a bang, as the team heads to Waco, Texas this week for the National Collegiate Equestrian Association (NCEA) National Championship. K-State opens the first round on Thursday with a matchup against Texas A&M.
Beginning with the 2014 championship, the top-12 overall teams (Western and Hunt Seat combined) are invited to compete. The NCEA Selection Committee determines and invites these teams based on a number of factors throughout the season.
“It is obviously a really big weekend and really big competition,” said head coach Casie Maxwell. “We are going to have to go up against some tough opponents in the first few rounds if we want to make it on to Saturday. We are just hoping that everyone is on their A game all on the same day so that we can move forward.”
The Western team looks to build off of its 8-1 drubbing of TCU in its last outing. The Horsemanship team will be led by senior Kelly Bovaird. Bovaird is coming off of a strong March, which saw the Tulsa, Okla., native earn Big 12 and NCEA Rider of the Month in Horsemanship with a perfect 3-0 record.
The K-State Reining team will also look to keep up its momentum that they built against TCU during the Big 12 Championship. Senior Jordan Cox will make her final appearance in the National Championship and brings a veteran presence to the Reining team. The senior holds a 10-4-1 record this season.
In The Hunter Seat arena, senior Rachel Webster and junior Madison Wayda will lead the team into competition for the final time as teammates. The duo have been consistent for the Wildcats all season and lead a veteran squad of riders. Webster’s overall record this season is 16-10-2, while Wayda is 16-12-1.
The winner between the Wildcats and Aggies will go on to face No. 4 seed Auburn on Friday, with the final two rounds to be held on Saturday.