ELKO — The time of the year has arrived, cowboys and cowgirls prepping to step on the biggest stage college rodeo has to offer.
A healthy crop of local talent is set to compete in the 71st annual College National Finals Rodeo, in Casper, Wyoming.
Ruby Valley native Klancy Krenka, no stranger to the CNFR, will make a return trip in two events.
Last season, he placed 14th in the bareback riding — adding another qualification in the event — also competing in the steer wrestling.
Competing for the College of Southern Idaho, Krenka was named the All-Around Cowboy of the Rocky Mountain region — scoring 1,810 points on the season.
His best finish came in the bareback, ranking second in the region with 1,235 points.
In the steer wrestling, he posted 475 points for fifth place.
Krenka will open his CNFR stint with a bucker, climbing aboard his first of at least three horses at 1 p.m. MST Sunday during the Sunday matinee rough stock performance.
He will dog his first steer during the 7 a.m. Monday slack.
Elko Class of 2018 graduate Alyssa Boyd never qualified for the National High School Finals Rodeo, but she knocked down a CNFR berth in the first year of her collegiate career.
Competing for Treasure Valley Community College, she finished second in the barrel standings of the Northwest region with 717 points.
For the year, she scored 1,350 points and finished third in the All-Around Cowgirl race — adding 300 points in the goat tying (seventh) and 233 points in the breakaway roping (14th).
She will make her first clover-leaf pattern during the 7 a.m. Monday slack.
Former Wells High School Rodeo Club member Daniel Eary also wasted little time in making an impact in college rodeo arenas.
He ranked second the Rocky Mountain region standings in the steer wrestling, scoring 650 points.
Eary also posted 275 points in the team roping and placed sixth in the standings, heeling for CSI partner Shaun Mentaberry.
For the season, Eary scored 1,000 points and finished eighth in the All-Around Cowboy hunt.
He will dog his first steer during the Monday slack.
Heading for Eary in the team roping, the boys posted a significant amount of points — Mentaberry finishing seventh in the heading standings.
However, Mentaberry — a Winnemucca native — did his damage in his go-to event, winning the Rocky Mountain region for CSI in the saddle bronc riding.
He closed third in the All-Around Cowboy race with 1,530 points, 1,255 of which came aboard the backs of broncs.
Mentaberry will also compete at the CNFR in the team roping, but he will head for Utah Valley University’s Saxon Day in Casper.
The first action of the CNFR for Mentaberry will take place on the back of a bucker, riding a bronc during the Sunday matinee.
Mentaberry and Day will run their first steer during the Monday slack.
Casey Thomas, Caleb Hendrix
Las Vegas’ Casey Thomas — competing for Utah State University Eastern, in Price — was the champion header of the Rocky Mountain region, spinning steers for another Nevada man.
The champion heeler was Fallon’s Caleb Hendrix, who rodeos for Utah Valley University, in Orem.
Thomas and Hendrix scored 785 points apiece during the season.
They will look for a clean run on their first steer during the Monday slack.
Las Vegas cowgirl Erika Thigpen, also a Rocky Mountain competitor, is now the region’s champion breakaway roper.
Competing for Southern Utah University, in Cedar City, Thigpen locked up the breakaway roping title with 480 points.
Her first run will come early, running her calf during the Sunday matinee.
Paradise Valley cowboy Luke Logan — who rides and ropes for CSI — will compete in two events at the CNFR.
He ranked fifth in the Rocky Mountain region All-Around Cowboy standings with 1,255 points.
Logan was fourth in the saddle bronc riding with 475 points, adding another fourth-place finish in the team roping while heading for brother Caleb Logan — each scoring 360 points.
Luke Logan added 420 points in the tie-down roping, placing fifth in the region.
At the CNFR, Luke Logan will head for CSI teammate Talon Clark, firing from the box in the Monday slack.
His first taste of action will take place in his bronc saddle, riding during the Sunday matinee.
Congratulations to all Nevada talents who earned qualifications to the 71st annual College National Finals Rodeo, and best of luck to all competitors during the weeklong event.
The CNFR will kick off at 1 p.m. Sunday during the rough stock matinee, the top-20 short round starting at 7 p.m. Saturday, in Casper, Wyoming.
View the action on the WatchESPN app and ESPN3.
Follow daily results online at http://www.collegerodeo.com/cnfr/ for more information throughout the week.