Liberty western team places third at final fall show
November 8, 2015 | Windsor, N.C.
In the first event with new coach Lauren Eagles on hand, Liberty University's western equestrian team finished its fall semester Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) schedule with its best performances to date over the weekend at Martin Community College in Windsor, N.C.
Sophomore Avonlea Kisner earned a second-place ribbon on Saturday, Liberty's highest-ever open-division showing. On Sunday, junior team captain Kayla Sims took third in the open competition and second in open reining, securing her the title of Overall Reserve Champion rider, the first such championship award for a Liberty western rider.
"We keep getting better," said Eagles, who formerly competed in western riding at Missouri State. "We made too many mistakes on Sunday, but we got their attention on Saturday."
|Liberty's Kayla Sims (left) and Avonlea Kisner placed second in open competition.|
The Lady Flames placed third overall, behind only St. Andrews and North Carolina State, in the two-day show that featured 10 colleges and universities from North Carolina and Virginia.
On Saturday, Liberty freshman Amber Dixon earned a blue ribbon and the Lady Flames got out to a great start by scoring 27 points, their highest one-day total in the program's two-year history. Liberty got strong performances from its top riders in the open division, in the team's first season competing in that category.
Liberty's hunt seat team will conclude its fall schedule this Saturday at Virginia Tech, when junior team captain Liz Chenelle will be back in the lineup for her season debut after she was injured on a fall early in the semester. The team will also send a few of its riders to Randolph College on Sunday for the first of several local junior varsity shows on the schedule, designed to give experience to riders who don't have many chances to compete in the regular IHSA shows.