Panola College Men's Rodeo Team takes National Championship
The Panola College Men's Rodeo Team won the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association National Championship last week in Casper, Wyoming, and Panola's freshman, Daylon Swearingen from Pifford, New York, won the National Championship in the Bullriding.
The Panola team racked up many awards along the way for their successful year including, the Men's National Championship, Bullriding National Championship - Daylon Swearingen, Bareback Reserve Champion - Tyler Johnson, of Athens, Men's Rookie of the Year - Daylon Swearingen, Tiedown Rookie of the Year - Macon Murphy, of Keatchie, LA, and Bullriding Rookie of the Year - Daylon Swearingen,
The Men's team that represented Panola College at the CNFR included Daylon Swearingen - Bullriding, Tyler Johnson - Bareback, Macon Murphy Tiedown, Logan Cook of Alto - saddlebronc, Clayton Lowery of Wills Point – team roping, and Ross Freeman of Kountze - bullriding.
The Panola Men's team, which also won the Southern Region, was well represented in the events. Daylon Swearingen, won the Bull Riding National Championship. He was 5th in the southern Region.
Daylon also took home the honor of the Men's Rookie of the Year and the NIRA Alumni Award of Rookie of the Year in Bullriding. Sophomore, Bareback Champion of the Southern Region, Tyler Johnson, finished as the Reserve Champion in the bareback.
Logan Cook, the Southern Region's All Around Champion, had qualified in saddle bronc and tie down. This was Logan's third year in a row to qualify for the CNFR, and ended up 10th in the saddle bronc after getting bucked off in the finals.
Coming into the finals the cowboy was sitting 2nd in the nation. Then he had a tough go in the tie down and finished 29th.
Freshman Macon Murphy qualified for the CNFR after finishing 3rd in the Southern Region. Macon had a trouble in the first two rounds but showed out in the third round as he won the round with a quick 7.7 sec roping, which was the fastest time of the entire rodeo.
Macon was also honored by the Alumni for the Tiedown Rookie of the Year award.
Team Roper heeler Clayton Lowery and his partner Kasen McCall from SFA finished 4th in the Southern Region and were selected by Coach Collins to be part of the team to represent Panola College.
They qualified for the finals in the 8th spot and ended up 12th after missing in the finals. The final team member was sophomore Ross Freeman who placed 4th in the Southern Region.
Freeman qualified for the Finals in the 11th spot after only riding one bull in the first three rounds. He was unsuccessful on Finals night.
"The team is made up of six incredible young men. I know exactly what type of effort and will that each one of them will give each day. We are so proud of them and what they have accomplished," said Coach Jeff Collins.