World champions!

Round Rock’s Rogers, Marana’s Petska win NFR team-roping championship

Rogers waives index finger at crownd while riding horse, holding rope.

Submitted | PRCA
Erich Rogers, pictured, and his partner Cory Petska finished the National Finals Rodeo as world champion team ropers. Rogers was fourth place all around.

LAS VEGAS, Nev.

Among the many tense battles at this year’s Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, the team-roping competition had a dramatic finish.

With a world title on the line, Erich Rogers and Cory Petska ran into trouble during their run in the final performance of the NFR. Rogers roped his end but their game plan of turning in a smooth run went awry when Petska’s horse stumbled just as Rogers turned the steer. “Cory did an outstanding job,” the Round Rock, Arizona, cowboy said. “His horse about went down and after that it was a blur.”

Petska said his partner did a good job of scoring their steer but when it was his turn his horse got tripped up at the most inopportune time. “When he got up (the steer) was going in the wrong direction and when Erich got him going in the right direction I roped him as fast as I could,” Petska said. “Luckily that was enough to hold us in the average position.”

Even with the trouble he had, the Marana, Arizona, cowboy said he never had doubts. “You just cowboy up and go back to him,” he said. “If you doubt yourself you probably shouldn’t be at the NFR. You cowboy up and get the job done.”

With the 8.3 run they turned in, both ropers managed to earn a fifth-place paycheck in that 10th round. More importantly, they finished the aggregate race in second place with a 53.90 effort that paid each roper $54,576. That windfall pushed their NFR earnings to $131,705 as they finished atop in the year-end standings with $265,416.

Tonight was a big night and we just wanted to make sure we caught our steer,” Rogers said. “We wanted to knock it down and let all the chips fall where they fall and go from there. We didn’t want to get into a speed jam or overthink things.”


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Categories: Rodeo

About Author

Quentin Jodie

Quentin Jodie is the Sports Editor for the Navajo Times. He started working for the Navajo Times in February 2010 and was promoted to the Sports Editor position at the end of summer in 2012. Previously, he wrote for the Gallup Independent. Reach him at qjodie@navajotimes.com