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An exciting end to the Ute Mountain Roundup

Colton Clemens competes in bareback riding on Saturday night during the Ute Mountain Roundup PRCA Rodeo at the Montezuma County Fairgrounds. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)
Over half of Ute Mountain Roundup’s first-place performances came on night three

Saturday was a barnburner for the Ute Mountain Roundup.

The last night of Cortez’s annual PRCA rodeo sold out every seat, and fans were not disappointed.

The third night was the charm for the bull riders, who finally posted qualifying rides.

Scotty Knapp took home the big check after an 83.5-point ride.

However, Josh Frost, the four time Linderman Award winner and three time Reserve World Champion bull rider, walked away with the audience’s support, who loudly booed the judge’s 78.5 score for his ride on Powder River Rodeo’s “Rez Dawg.” Frost’s brother, Jate Frost, took second with an 80.5-point ride.

Rodeo entertainer Matt Merritt has fun with the sold-out crowd during Saturday's Ute Mountain Roundup Rodeo performance. (Madelaine Gaskey/Special to The Journal)

Keenan Hayes, who stunned the rodeo world last season by becoming the first-ever person to win Rookie of the Year and the World Championship in the same year, visited the UMR just long enough to win the bareback competition. Hayes tied the arena record with his 85-point ride.

The ladies of the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association tallied first-place performances in barrel racing and breakaway roping posted on night three. Maddy Deerman of Hope, New Mexico, won the breakaway roping title with a time of just 2.4 seconds, and Doskie Edwards swept to the top of the barrel racing event in 17.35 seconds.

Jake Hannum won the tie-down roping event with a time of 8.7 seconds. In a total of five out of eight events, the first-place performance happened on Saturday night, marking an exciting end to the three-day UMR.

In all the excitement, the crowd also saw a few warmhearted moments.

The UMR celebrated Military Appreciation night by recognizing HD Randolph, Jerry Huskey and Gerald Goodall for their service. The crowd also welcomed 82nd Airborne veteran and skydiver Mike Semanoff, who made his third and final descent into the arena carrying the American flag.

Rodeo clown Matt Merritt was tasked with choosing a “fan of the night” for each night of the UMR.

On Night 1, he chose a couple who had been married for 62 years. On Night 2, it was a Vietnam veteran in the front row. On Night 3, it was a pair of 91-year-old twins who had attended every UMR Rodeo since 1953.

Merritt had the audience believe that the award and accompanying gift card is given to the loudest, rowdiest person in the arena. However, being unable to give the award to himself, Merritt seemingly chose the winner based on merit.

Maddy Deerman of N ew Mexico competes in breakaway roping during the Ute Mountain Roundup PRCA Rodeo at the Montezuma County Fairgrounds. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)
Skydiver, Mike Semanoff, who was a Paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne lands in the arena during the Ute Mountain Roundup PRCA Rodeo on Saturday at the Montezuma County Fairgrounds. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)
The crowd responds to the action at the Ute Mountain Roundup. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald)


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