Wildcat equestrian conquers South Dakota State in third home meet

Madison Wayda, senior hunter seat, takes a jump on Carasi at the Sept. 25, 2014 meet against New Mexico at Timbercreek Stables. (Hannah Hunsinger | The Collegian)

K-State’s equestrian team not only defeated South Dakota State 13-6 on Friday, but claimed three of the four most outstanding performer awards for the second consecutive day as well.

Sophomore Henley Adkins (equitation over fences and equitation on the flat) and junior Danielle Kemper (horsemanship) led the way for the Wildcats, who have now won their first three meets of the season.

Adkins said that though it was a long day, the team kept up their positivity and cheered each other on.

“My overall goal was to just earn my point for the team,” Adkins said. “The horses were awesome and stuck it out just as much as the riders.”

Adkins carried on Thursday’s strong performances in equitation on the flat scoring a 97, which is the highest score the Wildcats have seen this season. She also won a most outstanding performer award in Thursday’s match against New Mexico State.

For Kemper, this was her first time being honored as most outstanding performer in horsemanship. Kemper said she always sets small goals for herself and winning a most outstanding performer award was one of them.

“I felt really good, this year I’m really focusing on going in there and just riding,” Kemper said.

Head coach Casie Maxwell said she felt the girls rode well and that they continue to show good momentum. Though the team showed well in their first three competitions, Maxwell said they have areas that they can improve.

“I think they focused on the errors they made Thursday and they capitalized on the good things that they did,” Maxwell said.

Junior Kara Guy participated in the reining portion of Friday’s meet. Guy said overall she thought they had some really great rides and that the team continues to improve each show.

“I really liked my ride and had a lot of fun,” Guy said. “Penny (her horse) was great the entire time; she really stayed with me. It was probably one of the better rides I’ve had in awhile.”

The Wildcats will have two more chances for a win at home this fall, with the next competition being held on Oct. 11 against Alabama. The meet is a Hunt Seat Invitational and will only feature equitation on the flat and equitation over fences.