CASPER, Wyoming — As the case often is with rodeo, there’s been some ups and downs — a few highs and a number of lows.
At the 71st annual College National Finals Rodeo, things have not gone as planned for several Nevada talents.
Winnemucca’s Shaun Mentaberry is better known for his riding than his roping, but his loops have given him the best chance to make a run into the final round.
Competing for College of Southern Idaho and heading for Utah Valley University partner Saxon Day in the team roping, the duo is currently in 13th place of the average after two steers.
Mentaberry and Day opened the CNFR with a clean run, placing 10th in the first round with a time of 8.2 seconds.
In the second round on Tuesday, a hard-running steer took the run farther down the pen — a one-legged heel shot resulting in a five-second penalty and nearly a lost rope for a total time of 16.3 seconds before the dallies were secure and the ropes tight.
With a total time of 24.5 on two, Mentaberry and Day ranked 13th in the average.
They will run their third steer — a trip to the short-go on the line — during the Wednesday performance.
In the saddle bronc, Mentaberry — the 2019 Rocky Mountain region champion — boarded his first bucker in the Sunday matinee.
He started the ride well, locked in and tapped off with his feet, loosening up and losing his spurring motion as the horse made a circle to the right — finishing with a score of 63.5 points for 21st place in the first round.
During the Tuesday slack, his weakened as the ride progressed, ran off and limited his score to a 58.5.
With a two-round total of 122 points, Mentaberry rounded out the top-20.
He will board his third bronc during the Friday perf, knowing pretty well what he will need to do in order to make the top-20 of the three-head average for a fourth horse Saturday night.
Ruby Valley native Klancy Krenka, also competing for CSI, is the 2019 All-Around Cowboy of the Rocky Mountain region.
Finishing second in the region in the bareback riding, he has opened the CNFR with two qualified rides in the event.
Krenka knocked out his best ride of the CNFR on his first horse, scoring 74 points during the Sunday matinee and placing eighth in the first round.
He followed up with a 68 on round two during the Monday slack.
With a two-horse total of 142, Krenka went from eighth to 17th in the average.
He will climb on the back of his third bucking horse Wednesday night.
Also competing in the steer wrestling, he took a no-time on his first run.
He threw his second steer in 7.9 seconds and was 28th in the go-round, placing 35th in the average on one time.
Krenka was slated to run his third steer during the Tuesday night performance, looking for the fast-time run for the go-round.
Paradise Valley’s Luke Logan, another CSI man, also started his CNFR with some positive momentum — scoring 69 points in the saddle bronc during the Sunday matinee — unable to keep the ball rolling.
After placing 16th in the first round, he came down off his second horse during the Tuesday slack for a no-score.
After two rounds, Logan was 24th in the two-horse average and likely needed to break out a stellar ride Tuesday night to give himself a realistic chance of finishing in a decent spot or climbing on a fourth bronc.
Logan also qualified for the team roping, competing with CSI partner Talon Clarke.
They have taken no-times on each of their first-two runs and will run at their third and final steer during the Friday performance.
Like several others, CSI teammate Daniel Eary — the Rocky Mountain region runner-up in the steer wrestling — started the week well.
Eary made a solid run of 5.6 seconds during the Monday slack, placing eighth in the first round.
Unfortunately, he came up empty in round two — falling to 31st in the average on one run.
He will back in the box and run at a fast-time effort on his third steer during the Thursday perf.
Casey Thomas, Caleb Hendrix
Las Vegas’ Caleb Thomas — the Rocky Mountain region champion header — competes in the team roping with Fallon’s Caleb Hendrix, the region’s champion heeler.
Thomas, roping for Utah State University Eastern, and Hendrix, traveling with Utah Valley University, took a no-time during their first run.
They regathered but finished with a plus-five on the heel shot, finishing with a time of 12.8 seconds during the Tuesday slack, finishing 19th in the round and ranking 30th in the average on one run.
Thomas and Hendrix will chase their third steer during the Thursday performance.
Elko Class of 2018 graduate Alyssa Boyd qualified for the CNFR with a second-place finish in the Northwest region in the barrel racing, riding for Treasure Valley Community College.
Her CNFR has been consistent but off the pace.
Boyd opened the rodeo with two clean runs, posting a time of 15.65 seconds during the Monday slack and following with a 15.31 in the Tuesday slack, placing 35th in the first round and falling to 41st in the second.
In the two-run average, Boyd’s time of 30.96 seconds was 33rd place.
She will run her third and final pattern during the Wednesday performance.
Las Vegas cowgirl and Southern Utah University contestant Erika Thigpen is the 2019 Rocky Mountain region champion breakaway roper, but her start the CNFR has been anything but what she expected.
She took a no-time on each of her first-two calves during the Sunday matinee and the Tuesday slack, and Thigpen will try to salvage her week with a blazing run on her third calf in the Thursday performance.
The CNFR will run at 7 p.m. nightly, 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 collegerodeo.com/cnfr/ for more information throughout the week.