The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Equestrian tops No. 5 Oklahoma State in every event Saturday, earns 9-2 record on season

Photo by Photo by: Kathryn Perez

After three consecutive matches that resulted in victory margins of only two points or closer, Aggie equestrian was able to top Oklahoma State 12-8.
“I’m really excited about the entire team,” Texas A&M head coach Tana McKay said. “Very consistent across the board. Winning all four events is a huge deal. Oklahoma State is a tough team. The good thing is, it’s just down to some small details. The big picture is great.”
Again for the Aggies, the competition became dependent upon reining to bring home a victory Saturday. No. 3 A&M equestrian (9-2) welcomed the No. 5 ranked Oklahoma State (6-4) to the Hildebrand Equine Center. Both teams sought after a meaningful victory to help propel into their final one-on-one meets in March before their respective conference championships.
The Aggies have outscored opponents in hunter seat competition 15-13 and tied 14-14 since starting the second half of the season as the stakes rise before the SEC Championship in late March. However, the Aggies were able to show more durability against OSU in both hunter seat, and western competition, as they claimed 6-4 victories in both categories. As for OSU, the Cowgirls are now sandwiched between Baylor and TCU, and are likely to fall in the standings as the Big 12 Championship draws near.
A&M’s hunter seat team was successful with victories in equitation over fences by sophomore Rachael Hake, junior Haley Webster and senior Marlena Parker. Senior Audrey Gallagher started off the flat well, along with sophomore Alex Desiderio, who scored an 86 en route to a most outstanding player award. Senior Hannah Williams had a monstrous 83-68 run to give A&M a 9-6 advantage going into reining.
“My overall thought was that it was a really cool feeling,” Desiderio said. “I just think it’s going to give us confidence and I’m really happy to come out with a win today. We rode really strong today, it’s definitely a better feeling than sitting on your toes in the end.”
Western competition brought victories by sophomore Avery Ellis, junior Rachel Lucht and senior Carolyn Day in horsemanship, before A&M finished off OSU in reining. A&M earned points by junior Sarah Kate Grider, and seniors Hannah Jechow and Logan Pluhar in the final event to bring home the victory. Pluhar was awarded most outstanding player in reining for her 69-66 victory.
“In all four events we were very consistently strong today,” Pluhar said. “It’s always nice to come out with a four-event win. We still have areas that we need to work on, a few mistakes that we’ve got to clean up before we go to Auburn. They’re going to be really tough so we’re definitely looking forward to that.”
Texas A&M equestrian will return to action next weekend on Mar. 5 at 1 p.m. to challenge the No. 1 ranked Auburn Tigers on the road in Alabama. This will be A&M’s last road test of the season before returning to battle in its final regular season meet against SMU on Mar. 19 at home.

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