NO. 2 AUBURN HOLDS OFF NO. 1 TEXAS A&M IN TIEBREAK WIN
For the third time in four years, it all came down to the tiebreak score between the No. 2 Auburn equestrian team and No. 1 Texas A&M. And for the third time, the Tigers pulled out a victory in the 9-9 meet vs. the Aggies, capturing a 1594-1501.5 victory Saturday at the Auburn University Horse Center.
"It's always good to get a win and we'll always be happy when we can pull one out when it's close," head coach Greg Williams said. "However, we made mistakes that we shouldn't be making. Texas A&M rode very well, but we have to clean things up from our end."
Seniors Hannah Stephens and Ashley Foster picked up Most Outstanding Performer honors, coming in Horsemanship and Equitation Over Fences, respectively.
"Hannah (Stephens) had a great ride on a horse that was being tough today and I'm really proud of what she pulled off on that horse," Williams said. "Ashley (Foster) knocked it out from start to finish and we really love the ride she had."
Horsemanship put together a solid showing against the Aggies, going 4-1 on the day. Stephens was the high scorer, having 75.5 points in her MOP victory over Rachel Lucht. Sophomore Lauren Diaz followed with a 74-71.5 win, while freshman Kara Kaufmann remained undefeated on the year with a 72.5-70.5 win vs. Kaci Fisher. Sophomore Megan Rauh picked up Auburn's fourth point in the event as she defeated Sarah Orsak, 73-63.5.
A pair of Tigers in Foster and sophomore Caitlin Boyle put two points on the board for Auburn in Equitation Over Fences. Foster's 85-83 win gave her MOP honors and kept her undefeated in the discipline. Boyle topped Kai DeVoglaer, 84-75, and Auburn went into intermission with a 6-4 lead.
It was a tight contest in Equitation on the Flat as Auburn came away with a 2-1 win in the event. Senior Tory Hoft earned her third win of the year, topping Alex Desiderio, 82-78. Sophomore Hayley Iannotti was the high scorer in the event, having 89 points in her win. Boyle and Foster came away with a pair of ties in their matches.
With Reining remaining, Auburn held a slim 8-5 advantage. The Aggies took four points in tightly contested matches, while junior Alexa Rivard gave Auburn its ninth point of the day with a 68.5-59 victory over Sarah McEntire.
NO. 6 SMU TOPS NO. 9 OKLAHOMA STATE IN HOME OPENER
Trailing 7-6 with equitation on the flat left, the No. 6 SMU equestrian team won four-of-five remaining points, to beat No. 9 Oklahoma State, 10-8, in comeback fashion Saturday at the Dallas Equestrian Center. SMU improves to 2-0, while OSU falls to 1-1.
After OSU won the first point, sophomore Nora Gray started the comeback push with a MOP-winning, 79-75, victory over Carly Barrick. Haley Zimmerman used an 80-75 win to knot the competition at eights, before Vivian Yowan rolled over Maggie Drysch, 72-63, to give the Mustangs a 9-8 lead. With the final point up for grabs, senior Sylvia de Toledo clinched the victory for SMU with an easy, 75-62, win over Kayla Lott.
"I am really proud of our flat riders today," SMU head coach Carol Gwin said. "They were under a lot of pressure, stepped up and clinched the meet. Coach Megan Southam has worked really hard with these girls on the flat, so it is great to see the hard work pay off."
"This was a huge win for us today, Gwin added. "It was nice to see the girls did not give up, but fought harder in the second half, which has been a big focus for us so far this year."
Earlier in the day, SMU won equation over fences, 3-2. de Toledo scored the first point for the Mustangs, using an 88-74 rout over Barrick, to earn the MOP honor. Gray won the second point with a 77-76 edge, before Alexis Graves used a 71-69 win to claim the discipline for SMU.
SMU claimed horsemanship, 2-1, with Hannah McCain and Michaela Dinger leading the way. McCain used a 73.5-70.5 victory to win the horsemanship MOP, before Dinger scored the discipline's high score to beat Libby Collins, 74-71.5.
"OSU has a fantastic horsemanship squad, so for our girls to compete so well with them today, displayed the great coaching from coach Trista Adkins, and fan support at our new home facility."
The day started in reining, where Keagan Snively used a 66-63 victory over Julia Purus to score SMU's lone point.