(December 11, 2014) — Stephenville and Erath County cowboys reeled in more than $70,000 in the eighth go-round of the 2014 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo Thursday night at The Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.
With two rounds remaining, local competitors remain on track to combine for more than $1 million at the finals. They are currently over $820,000 with two rounds remaining.
Leading the way – to no surprise – were the strong contingency of team ropers, who combined to win more than $30,000.
World leaders Clay Tryan of Lipan and Jade Corkill of Huckabay shared second and third place money with Kaleb Driggers of Huckabay and Patrick Smith of Lipan. Each team stopped the clock in 4.0 seconds, and all four cowboys won more than $13,000.
Tryan and Corkill are the only pairing to rope all eight steer. They have each banked more than $160,000 this season, including more than $50,000 in the finals. If they rope their final two steer, they will win the average and an additional $48,732, and they may need it with a narrow lead in the world standings of less than $700 over round eight winners Trevor Brazile and Travis Graves.
Paul Eaves of Huckabay and partner Dustin Bird followed their round seven victory with a sixth-place finish and more than $3,400 each. They have earned more than $56,000 each in the finals.
Tarleton cowboy Richie Champion cashed in for the fourth time in his first finals appearance, taking third in the bareback riding with a score of 82 points on Sudoku. Champion added another $11,000-plus to his finals earnings, which have topped the $50,000 plateau.
Champion remains fourth in the average, just half of a point out of third. Stephenville’s Bobby Mote relinquished his lead in the average, slipping to sixth with a score of 71.5. Both cowboys have rode all eight broncs successfully. Mote is third and Champion fifth in the world standings.
Cody Ohl made the tie-down roping money for the sixth time in eight performances, placing sixth in 7.3 seconds. With Thursday’s $3,000-plus, the six-time world champ has made just short of $65,000 in his 20th finals. The Hico cowboy is still chasing a record 52nd career win in the WNFR after tying legendary Billy Etbauer’s record of 51 in Wednesday’s round seven.
Rounds nine and 10 are Friday and Saturday. CBS Sports broadcasts each round beginning at 9 p.m. CST.