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Roche Kick Starts Season with Denver Win

Roche kick starts season with Denver win

DENVER – Fresh off his inaugural trip to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo presented by Polaris RANGER, steer wrestler Baylor Roche continued his momentum at the National Western Stock Show & Rodeo (Jan. 15-27).

The Trementon, Utah, cowboy clocked a 13.0-second time on three head to capture the average title before a near-capacity crowd of 7,900 at the Denver Coliseum.

Roche clinched the average crown with a solid 4.3-second run in the finals.

“I had a steer they broke the barrier on and was a little bit slower,” Roche said about his steer in the finals. “I wanted to make sure I got a good start, but I wasn’t going to break the barrier. The steer was really good on the ground and I was able to throw him down and let it all play out.”

Roche easily defeated veteran Josh Peek who came in second at 14.8 seconds on three head.

“This feels really good to win here because that’s something I’ve never done before,” said Roche, who was making his third appearance at Denver.

Roche, 26, left the Mile High city with $10,168 in winnings – $6,188 for winning the average crown.

“I like to stay positive and keep my momentum going in the winter,” Roche said. “Last year my first winter rodeo was Fort Worth and I won it ($14,663) and that kept me going into the summer and I want to do the same thing this year.”

Roche was riding the horse Cruiser in Denver. The horse is owned by Cole Fulton.

“I rode Cruiser all last year and I know how to score on him and the horse worked great (Sunday),” Roche said.

A year ago, Roche finished a career-best ninth in the world standings with $147,979. He won $66,423 at the WNFR in Las Vegas, including winning Round 10 in 3.6 seconds.

Other winners at the $466,672 rodeo were all-around cowboy Trevor Brazile ($10,200, team roping and tie-down roping), bareback rider Jake Brown (252 points on three head), team ropers Clay Smith and Paul Eaves (16.7 seconds on three head), saddle bronc rider Sam Spreadborough (246 points on three head), tie-down roper Trevor Brazile (23.8 seconds on three head), barrel racer Shelby Hermann (46.11 seconds on three runs), and bull rider Cody Campbell (247 points on three head).

Tie-down roper Riley Pruitt set a new record at the NWSS with his 6.9-second time in the finals. Brazile’s average time in tie-down roping also was a new NWSS record.

Courtsy of PRCA