Georgia Closes Out Fall Schedule with Win Over TCU
FORT WORTH, Texas- The No. 4 Georgia equestrian team handed the No. 8 TCU Horned Frogs an 11-6 loss Saturday, Nov. 23 at Turning Point Ranch in Fort Worth, Texas. The Bulldogs swept MOP honors on the day as McKenzie Lantz (Reining), Liza Finsness (Equitation on the Flat), Abby O’Mara (Equitation Over Fences) and Heather Schmidt (Horsemanship) each picked up the honors. The win rounds out the fall schedule for the Bulldogs as they move to 4-2 on the season.
Georgia started the meet strong, taking Equitation Over Fences 3-1. Kylee Arbuckle took the first point of the meet, defeating TCU’s Kaitlyn Perry 80-67. Georgia picked up the next two points with winning rides from Megan Southam and O’Mara, who outscored their opponents 84-0 and 83-77, respectively. With Georgia up 3-0 in the event, Olivia Dorey and TCU’s Molly Pedicord rode to a 75-75 tie. TCU grabbed the final point, giving Georgia a 3-1 advantage going into Horsemanship.
In Horsemanship, the lone point for Georgia came from Heather Schmidt who grabbed the first point with her MOP-winning 74-71 win. TCU answered by picking up the next to points. With the TCU leading 2-1, both Rachel Kolb and Vanessa Gillette tied with their opponents each scoring 70 points allowing TCU to take the event 2-1, resulting in a 4-3 Georgia lead going into the half.
Georgia riders swept Equitation on the Flat with a perfect score of 5-0 that allowed the Bulldogs to extend its lead to 9-3. The Bulldogs used winning rides by Southam, Dorey, Leylan Gleeson, Finsness, and Arbuckle to take an 8-2 lead over TCU. The sweep was highlighted by an MOP-earning ride by Finsness.
Georgia’s Charley Thiel earned the first point in Reining, riding to a 69-64.5 victory. TCU took the next three points, allowing them to take a 3-1 lead. Lantz picked up the final point of the meet with an MOP-earning 71-67.5 decision. TCU claimed a 3-2 victory in Reining but Georgia came away with an 11-6 win.
The Bulldogs return to action on Jan. 24 when they take on UT-Martin in Martin, Tenn.
Auburn Equestrian Spurs SMU, 15-3
AUBURN, Ala. - The third-ranked Auburn equestrian team put on a dominating performance on Saturday with its second straight road win, and a 15-3 victory over No. 10 SMU. Auburn improves to 5-1 overall on the season.
For the second straight day, the Tigers competed in 40-degree temperatures and rainy conditions, causing the meet to be conducted in a single ring.
Auburn was in full control of the meet from beginning to end, starting with a 5-0 sweep of equitation over fences. No Auburn rider scored less than an 84, with wins from Jennifer Waxman, Elizabeth Benson, Demi Stiegler, Christina Lin and Quincy Hayes. Three women posted their best scores of the season - Stiegler with an 86, Benson with an 84 and Hayes with an 87, which also earned her MOP honors. The sweep also improved Auburn's record in the event this season at 23-8
The horsemanship lineup also posted a strong 4-0 performance to bring the team score to 9-0 after just two events. With only one rider surrendering a tie, Auburn saw wins from Danielle Long, Stephanie Rucci, Griffin Knight and Hannah Loseke. Rucci earned MOP for her 72.5.
"It was a great performance by our riders, to pull off such a solid win on the road," said head coach Greg Williams. "We really appreciate the SMU girls putting on a meet in such cold and tough conditions. The pressure was on them to try and compete, and put on a meet in harsh conditions. It can be tough to compete in a day like this but luckily our girls came focused and got a lot of points right off the bat in the beginning so they could stay loose during that time."
Equitation on the flat was a much closer competition as Auburn edged SMU, 3-2. Jennifer Delman, Lin and Stiegler all registered wins. The highest score for Auburn for the event was Benson's 85, but got beat out by SMU MOP Charlotte Jacobs' 88.
The reining team also racked up the wins, taking the event 3-1. Cheyenne Cracraft got her fourth victory of the season, and Morgan Burns and Rucci also were in the winning column.
With two more wins today, Lin and Stiegler increased their overall season win total to nine in only six meets competed.
Most Outstanding Players (MOP)
Equitation over Fences: Quincy Hayes, Auburn
Horsemanship: Stephanie Rucci, Auburn
Equitation in the Flat: Charlotte Jacobs, SMU
Reining: Courtney Line, SMU
UP NEXT: Auburn closes out the weekend with one final meet on Sunday vs. No. 9 Texas A&M. The road trip will signal the end of the fall season.