Centenary Coach Michael Dowling (on left) and team intermediate fences rider Marissa Cohen (on right, with most of the Cyclone team behind
her) head for the winner's circle after the sophomore won the division at IHSA Nationals on April 24th.
DEFENDING CHAMPION WILDCATS SETTLE FOR SECOND; CYCLONES RULE SUPREME FOR FIRST TIME SINCE '79
MURFREESBORO, TN - Once again fans received more than their money's worth at 2009 IHSA
Nationals (which as usual were free to the general public) as the race for both the high
point hunter seat and western teams went down to the final class.
For the purposes of this story we focus on the results of the hunter seat team
competition, which included 12 returning teams from the 2008 IHSA National show in Burbank,
California. The returnees were the University of Wisconsin at Madison, shut out at
the Los Angeles Equestrian Center but not to be kept off the board this time; Stanford
University, making their fourth consecutve appearance with a full hunter seat team; Zone 5
entries Berry College and the College of Charleston, each of which tied for sixth in 2008
with eleven points; Zone 2 entrees Centenary College, Skidmore College and St. Lawrence
University, the latter two part of a three-way tie for Reserve High Point Team at '08
Nationals; the University of Findlay, who like Skidmore and St. Lawrence scored 18 points
to share Reserve status; Virginia Intermont College, the National Champion three times
between 2004 and 2007, looking to win a fourth title in six attempts; Penn State
University, making their seventh appearance in a row (second only to Virginia Intermont's
current streak of ten visits); Brown University, which appeared to finish third at Zone 1
Zones but later earned the nod after a rider on the second-place team was found to be
ineligible; and the University of Kentucky, the suprise 2008 National Champions, winning
the crown with only 21 points via three blue ribbons won by two riders. One of those
riders, two time Zone 6, Region 2 Cacchione qualifier Callie Schott, graduated around the
time of 2008 Nationals, a significant loss considering Schott won both team open classes.
Teammate Ali Cibon, who won team intermediate over fences in Burbank, was back, now entered
in team open equitation on the flat. Save for Cibon and Rebecca Wichard, entered at the
'08 show in team novice flat and now entered in team intermediate flat, the rest of the
Wildcats competing in the team classes were making their IHSA Nationals debuts.
Three of the remaining six schools had advanced a full team to Nationals 23 months
earlier, when the show took place at the Big E in West Springfield, Massachusetts. Purdue
University was back, having upended Zone 9, Region 1 rival St. Mary of the Woods during the
regular season; West Texas A & M University switched regions, moving back into Zone 7,
Region 2 and thus defeating Louisiana State University during the regular season rather
than facing them at Zones and losing a tiebreaker as was the case in '08; and Mount Holyoke
College, one of only four teams to break double-digits at the Big E two seasons earlier.
The usually-formidable Lyons won back Zone 1, Region 3 in 2008-09 after rival University of
Massachusetts at Amherst had been the story of the year in 2007-08 for ending Mount
Holyoke's eleven-year run of region titles. Rounding out the field were Sweet Briar
College, which finished third behind Stanford, Penn State and '06 Champion Mount Holyoke
in their last IHSA Nationals appearance at Harrisburg in 2006; the University of Southern
California, qualifying a team for only the second time ever (and actually getting that full
team to the National show. Only a few members of the '92 Trojans made it to Nationals as
the Los Angeles area airports were closed at the time due to the Rodney King incident); and
Lafayette College, winning Zone 3, Region 4 and advancing a full team to the post-season for
the first time in program history. The Leopards also ended a losing streak for Region 4,
as the previous seven Zone 3 team entrees from this region had failed to advance to
Nationals. Coached by Lafayette graduate Erin Githens, the Leopards came within a point of
tieing Penn State for high point team at Zone 3 Zones a few weeks prior to Nationals.
|From Cincinnati, Ohio, University of Kentucky freshman Lauren Patterson (pictured) received the
highest combined judge's score in the first team class, an '83' in novice fences. Though the top five were tested,
Patterson gave the defending National Champions the early lead with a first.
2008 Nationals had been the closest contest in Nationals history, with eight teams still
alive for a share of the National Championship going into the final team class. There had
been a feeling that '08 Nationals was going to be fairly balanced going in, and many felt
2009 Nationals had a chance to be equally balanced. However to expect all but one school
to score below 20 points again seemed like a stretch. After all could everyone really be
that evenly matched? Hmmmmmm...
Held slightly earlier than most seasons, 2009 IHSA Nationals commenced on April 23rd.
For the third time since May of 2003 the National show was held at the Tennessee Miller
Coliseum in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, the complex being the home base of Middle Tennessee
State University. The first class of the day was actually individual intermediate over
fences, and that division was won by Cibon. The first team class followed, with Novice
riders having their turn over the jumps. After each ride judges Pamela Hunt and Mindy
Minetto (the latter a late replacement for Geoff Teall) sent their scores to the
announcer's booth via walkie-talkie. In the booth the scores were combined so that
announcer Justin Ochs (who was announcing at an IHSA Nationals show for the first time)
could read them shortly after each rider had completed her/his course. By the time all 18
riders had completed the course only ten had scored '70' or higher, and only two had an
average in the 80's. Julie Connors, a Centenary College sophomore from Hebron,
Connecticut (a town which also is home to Windcrest Farm, the site of some Zone 1, Region
1 shows) received an '81' while Lauren Patterson, a University of Kentucky freshman from
Cincinnati, Ohio received an '83.' However Hunt and Minetto called back five riders to
After the testing was completed all eighteen riders returned to the ring for the
awarding of ribbons. Sixth place went to Amanda Shamer of Virginia Intermont College,
who had received a score of '75' and was the lone rider in the division to receive a
ribbon without having to test. Fifth went to Connors while fourth went to West Texas
A & M sophomore Anna Getz, who had received a score of '78' prior to testing (which was
the fifth best score in the division). Chelsea Jones of Skidmore College, having scored
a '78.5' prior to testing, earned third place while the red ribbon went to Kara Wintz of
the University of Findlay. A sophomore from Inverness, Illinois, Wintz became the third
Findlay rider in three seasons to place no worse than second in the division (Raffi
Kechejian, who now coaches Vanderbilt University, was second in Burbank while Becky
Baumel, who now coaches Mississippi College, won the division in West Springfield). This
meant for the third season in a row the Oilers were among the leaders through one
team class (Wintz received a '79' before the testing). Kentucky remained undefeated for
the day as Patterson won the blue ribbon. Depending on how you look at it, this gave the
Wildcats two straight wins in team classes (as Schott won team open flat to conclude the
'08 contest) or three straight wins in IHSA Nationals hunter seat classes (figuring in
Cibon's blue ribbon to start the day). In any event some were surprised to see
the Schott-less Wildcats still looking like world-beaters. Things would get even better
for the University of Kentucky, for a while at least.
Following a pair of individual over fences classes (the first of which had no
University of Kentucky entree, breaking the streak) and an hour and half break to remove
jumps and drag the ring it was time for team intermediate on the flat. The standings
would become even more balanced as four schools received team ribbons for the first time
today. Upon entering the ring each of the eighteen riders walked, trotted and cantered
in each direction. Eventually all 18 riders were lined up and then brought back out for
a second look. Even later the riders were called in one at a time until only two were
left cantering. Then those two, Karen Kearney of the University of Wisconsin at Madison
and Caitlin Smith of the College of Charleston, were both asked to join the others
already lined up. The ribbon presentations for flat riders on the first day of IHSA
Nationals took place with riders still mounted on their draws. Heather McPheeters
earned Sweet Briar College their first point with a sixth while Lindsay Baker received
fifth place to give Findlay the points they needed to move into a tie for first. Ali
Krecker of Centenary College was fourth, raising the Cyclone's total to five points.
Kathryn King, a University of Southern California freshman was third, earning what are
believed to be the first Trojan team points at Nationals in program history. Kearney, a
senior from Cleveland, Ohio was the Reserve Champion while Smith made it a three-way tie
for the moment with a first. A junior from Glenmore, Pennsylvania, Smith could claim to
have won consecutive IHSA Nationals team classes, having won team novice flat last May
11th to suddenly give Charleston a chance to win going into the final team class (Smith
was riding for the second time this April 23rd, having placed seventh in individual
intermediate over fences). Through two team classes it was Kentucky 7, Charleston 7,
Findlay 7, Wisconsin at Madison 5, Centenary 5, Skidmore 4, Southern Cal 4, West Texas
A & M 3, Sweet Briar 1 and Virginia Intermont 1.
|As was the case in 2004 and 2005, horse draw involved selecting a rubber duck out of a
stream with a number written on the bottom of the duck. That number coresponded to a number assigned to a
horse, and in the case of team intermediate on the flat Caitlin Smith's duck had the number of the winning
horse! Smith (seen here with her duck) did have a lot to do with the horse winning, as the College of
Charleston junior rode him the best in the eyes of judges Mindy Minetto and Pamela Hunt (not pictured).
The Cougars were tied with Kentucky and Findlay for the lead through Smith's blue ribbon performance.
Only once during 2009 IHSA Nationals were hunter seat team classes held back-to-back.
This happened when team novice flat took place immediately after team intermediate flat.
Two schools would get on the board for the first time while two schools would break
double digits. Team novice flat took place almost exactly the same way as team
intermediate, with riders walking, trotting, cantering, reversing, repeating, etc.
The riding portion of this division itself took place in under 20 minutes, as Hunt and
Minetto apparently knew what they were looking for. Sixth place went to Elizabeth Leduc
of Berry College. It would be the first of two rides for Leduc on this day, as the
Viking sophomore would later place eighth in individual walk-trot-canter. Rebecca Hart
of West Texas A & M received fifth place, raising the Buffaloes' total to five points.
The University of Findlay made it three ribbon colors in three classes, as Sarah Guidice
was fourth. The Oilers now had red, pink and white ribbons and a share of first place.
Third place went to Chelsea Dressler of Virginia Intermont College. VI thus now had
five points and was within a second of catching the leaders. We admit we at Campus
Equestrian forgot to ask Brittany Cunnane where she was from and what year she is (we
thought we had written it down in a previous Zone 2, Region 1 show program, but if we
did we have not been able to locate the information), but regardless her second place
ribbon moved Centenary into a tie for first with Findlay at 10 points each. While the
Cyclones and Oilers were the latest leaders, the race for second remained a three-way
battle. Kelsey Work, a Lafayette College freshman from Los Angeles, California earned
the Leopards' first-ever IHSA Nationals team points with a first. Suddenly Lafayette
was only three points off the lead, tied with Charleston and the defending champion
Wildcats at seven each. Virginia Intermont, Wisconsin-Madison and West Texas A & M had
five, Skidmore and Southern Cal four and both Berry and Sweet Briar one each.
After a pair of individual classes, team open flat was the ninth of eleven classes
held on the first day of Nationals (the only all-hunter seat day of the four-day event).
Since one should have expected the unexpected by now, few would be surprised that four
of the six schools to earn points in team open flat were averting a shutout and scoring
for the first time today. Though the walk-trot-canter-reverse procedure did not change,
the group was split into two groups of nine for further testing. When it was over Brown
University was on the scoreboard, as Elizabeth Gilberti was sixth in her first IHSA
Nationals appearance since the Big E. St. Lawrence earned their first points via
Suzanne Snyder, who was second in the division at the LAEC but fifth this time. Sarah
Scharf of Stanford had finished out of the ribbons in the division a year ago but put
the Cardinal on the board with a fourth this time. Mount Holyoke scored team points for
the first time since Nathalie Cooper won team open fences to conclude the 2007 Nationals
hunter seat team competion as Amanda Pettengill was third. Cibon nearly made it two
blue ribbons in one day, as the sophomore from Bannockburn, Illinois was the Reserve
Champion. Jennifer Wilkins, a Skidmore College senior from Lincoln, Massachusetts was
the last rider in the division to hear her name called. Wilkins, who placed second in
individual intermediate flat two seasons earlier, gave the well-named Thoroughbreds
seven points to raise their total to eleven. At the halfway point of the competition
(this even though the sun had not yet set on the first day of the four-day show) it was
Kentucky 12, Skidmore 11, Centenary 10, Findlay 10, College of Charleston 7, Lafayette
7, Virginia Intermont 5, Texas A & M 5, Wisconsin at Madison 5, Mount Holyoke 4,
Southern Cal 4, Stanford 3, St. Lawrence 2, Berry 1, Brown 1 and Sweet Briar 1. Though
Penn State and Purdue were not yet on the board both could claim that two firsts would
give them the lead under the right circumstances!
|Known to her teammates by the nickname of "Jeffie," Skidmore College senior
Jennifer Wilkins was one of six Cacchione Cup entries who were coincidentally competing in the
team open flat division. Wilkins (pictured) won team open flat to move Skidmore within a point
of Kentucky for the top spot through half of the hunter seat team classes.
The final class on day one of '09 Nationals was team walk-trot-canter. Again the
class was split into two groups of nine after the initial gaits. For the third time
Virginia Intermont College was in the ribbons as Krista Hayes was sixth. Mount Holyoke
added two points via Kim Nichols in fifth while Alexandra McGuire put Skidmore ahead for
nearly a minute with a fourth. The top three in the division were all freshman making
their IHSA Nationals debuts. Elizabeth Kunz of Kentucky put the Wildcats back ahead
with a third-place showing. Stanford suddenly was halfway to the top, as Chase Hickok
was second. From Durham, North Carolina, Hickok would not be the only male member of
the Cardinal team to earn a top two team placing.
Zone 2, Region 1 includes a school by the name of Sarah Lawrence College. Named
after the wife of founder William Van Duzer Lawrence when it opened in 1926, Sarah
Lawrence has produced several IHSA Nationals qualifiers, but not this season. However
the winner of team walk-trot-canter is a walking billboard for the school, in that her
name is in fact Sarah Lawrence! From Canton, Georgia, this Sarah Lawrence earned seven
points for Berry College, moving the Vikings into a tie with Stanford for fourth place.
Through five team classes it was Kentucky 16, Skidmore 14, Centenary 10, Findlay 10,
Berry 8, Stanford 8, Lafayette 7, College of Charleston 7, Virginia Intermont 6, Mount
Holyoke 6, Texas A & M 5, Wisconsin at Madison 5, Southern Cal 4, St. Lawrence 2, Sweet
Briar 1 and Brown 1.
Considering how balanced the scoring had been at 2008 Nationals, the totals through
five team classes in '09 showed even more parity. Through five team classes at the
LAEC Findlay was ahead with 16, Kentucky had 14, Berry and the University of
Massachusetts 11, Centenary 10 and both Brown and Virginia Intermont 7. Two of the
eventual reserve high point champions, Skidmore and St. Lawrence, were not in the top
seven. By contrast in 2009 eight teams had seven or more points through five divisions.
Would the new hunter seat National Champion set a record for fewest points in winning
the title? Would there be a wild four or five-way tie for the title? IHSA rules
currently do not break ties at Nationals shows (be they hunter seat or western), so the
thought of more than one champion emerging was a real possibility, at least for the
|Berry College Head Coach Margaret Knight (on left) holds the Gail A. Hulick Memorial
Trophy while Viking freshman Sarah Lawrence holds her blue ribbon won in team walk-trot-canter. There was
still daylight outside when Lawrence won the fifth hunter seat team classes on day one of '09
Nationals. Lawrence's first, which put Berry eight points out of first for the time being, concluded the
2009 day one proceedings at 6:59PM local time.
Though Ali Cibon had a second and a third while Caitlin Smith had a first and seventh
these were the only riders with multiple ribbons which included a top two placing on day
one of Nationals. When day two started with alumni over fences, no one could guess that
the second class of the day would start a hot streak for one rider who would become the
story of 2009 Nationals. That second class was the jumping phase of the Cacchione Cup
Competition, and after all 31 rounds were completed one rider had the first combined
judge's score in the ninties so far. Lindsay Clark, a Centenary College junior from New
Paltz, New York who had transferred from Bridgewater College prior to the 2008-09 season
received a '90' score to lead the Cacchione through one phase. Though she had been out
of the ribbons in team open flat the day before, Clark would become nearly invincible
from here on in.
Following the Cacchione over fences was one of only two hunter seat team classes held
on day two of Nationals, the team intermediate over fences. Starting shortly before
12:00PM local time and completed in under 45 minutes, the results put five teams into
double figures and each of the five only one class from potentially taking the lead.
The top four were tested, each of which had received a score in the eighties. When the
placings were announced sixth went to Joyce Williams of the University of Wisconsin at
Madison, who had received a '78.5' to give the Badgers their sixth point. Fifth went to
University of Kentucky sophomore Katie Kearney, whose '79' added two crucial points to
the Wildcat's total. Fourth went to Mary Margaret Fly of Findlay, who had received an
'84' prior to testing. Third went to Paige Kaylor of Sweet Briar, who had an '82' and
moved up in the testing phase. The Reserve Champion was Crystal Threlfall of the
College of Charleston. A junior from Ridgefield, Connecticut, Threlfall had the
highest jumping score of anyone in the division with an '85' and her five points gave
the Cougars 12 overall. Moving up from fourth going into the test with an '81' to first
was Marissa Cohen of Centenary College. A sophomore from West Chester, Pennsylvania,
Cohen had the most impressive test and snapped the Cyclones' scoreless team class streak
at two straight with the win. More importantly Centenary moved to within a point of
Kentucky, trailing only 18-17. Skidmore remained at 14, Findlay moved up three to 13,
Charleston moved up from 7 to 12 while Stanford and Berry remained at 8 each. It really
seemed like 2009 could end up exactly like 2008 at this point.
Seven classes would take place before team walk-trot much later in the day, including
two sections of the Cacchione Cup flat phase. Though scores were not announced at the
time, the flat scores would be posted within two hours of the completion of both phases.
Clark had the high score in the first phase with an '85' (only Jen Windish of the
University of Delaware scored higher, receiving an '86' in the second phase). At this
point the combination of Clark and Cohen had given Centenary some momentum, and two
classes before team walk-trot Cyclone senior Mary Bogatko nearly won her team another
blue ribbon. Bogatko finished second to Margaret Wiggin of the University of
Massachusetts at Amherst in individual walk-trot.
Team walk-trot was the final hunter seat class of any kind on April 24th (and a
division Bogatko had won a year ago). Three of the riders in the division were
holdovers from the 2008 team walk-trot class, and though none of these three earned
points at the LAEC one of them would come up big in Murfreesboro.
The division started out innocently enough, with everyone walking and trotting.
Eventually riders were asked to move into the middle one at a time until only three
were left on the rail. The crowd was then stunned to hear Ochs' request that the
remaining three riders drop their irons! This was a walk-trot division, and it would be
illegal to ask riders to pick up the canter. After each rider had ridden their draw
about 30 feet Ochs announced for riders to pick up their stirrups. It is not clear if
the judges simply wanted to see if walk-trotters were capable of droping and retrieving
their stirrups, or if there was discussion of having them trot without stirrups (it is
unclear if this is legal at an IHSA show or not). In any event the final three riders
were not asked to trot once they had their stirrups back in place. Instead they were
asked to join the others in the middle of the ring, and shortly thereafter riders were
allowed to dismount.
Sixth place went to Sarah Brady of Mount Holyoke College, bringing the Lyons' total
to seven. Fifth went to Erica Carson of the College of Charleston, elevating the
Cougars over Findlay to tie Skidmore for third place if only temporarily. Fourth went to Rebecca De Sa of
Brown University. The Bears total increased to four points which put them in a tie
with Southern Cal and Penn State for the moment, the latter averting a shutout as
Andrew Kennedy became the first Nittany Lion rider on the scoreboard with a third.
Though she had not placed in the division at the LAEC a year ago, Virginia Intermont
College senior Michelle Wynn kept hopes for a National Championship in Bristol alive.
From Melbourne, Florida, Wynn was the reserve champion, raising VI's total to eleven.
For the second time since Ochs had started announcing the walk-trot results there was a
change for third place team. Alex Jacobs, a senior from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania added
seven points to the Stanford total. The Cardinal now had 15, putting them only three
points out of first. Jacobs was candid about the 'drop your irons' request, saying
something to the effect of 'I don't know if I will stay on but I'll do it.' With the
results in from the only class to feature male hunter seat riders earning two of the
top three ribbons the score was Kentucky 18, Centenary 17, Stanford 15, Charleston 14,
Skidmore 14, Findlay 13, Virginia Intermont 11, Berry 8, Lafayette 7, Mount Holyoke 7,
Wisconsin - Madison 6, West Texas A & M 5, Sweet Briar 5, Southern Cal 4, Penn State 4,
Brown 4, St. Lawrence 2 and Purdue still hoping to get on the board. Seven schools
were still alive for at least a share of the National Championship. And with the right
combination it was still mathematically possible for a six-way tie at 18!
|From left to right are Stanford coach Jim Hagman, Head Coach Vanessa Bartsch, walk-trot rider Alex Jacobs
and Jacob's girlfriend Pam Geist (who won team novice flat for the Cardinal at 2006 IHSA Nationals). Prior to the season 2008 graduate
Geist convinced Jacobs to join the Stanford team to fill a potential void at the walk-trot level. Jacobs went on to win
one of the most memorable team walk-trot classes in Nationals history, if only for the judge's request that the last three
riders in the ring drop their irons(!).
The final hunter seat team class opened the Saturday, April 25th session. Team open
over fences featured nine of the 18 riders who competed in team open flat, three
riders who had ridden in the Cacchione classes (but not in a team class) and Smith of
Charleston who had ridden in two intermediate classes. Previous time in the seat at
2009 Nationals made a difference here, as none of the five riders who were saddled up
for the first time this week finished inside the top six. The class started at 9:08AM
with Laura Lemanski of Purdue doing her best to try to put the Boilermakers on the
scoreboard. Hunt and Minetto liked Lemanski's ride, as she received an '82.' Soon
after Cassie Herman of Mount Holyoke received an '86' while Elizabeth Lubrano of Penn
State earned an '85.' Then halfway through the division it was Clark's turn. By good
fortune the Centenary junior drew a horse named 'Tres Corona,' who she had also drawn
for the jumping phase of the Cacchione a day earlier. Though she earned a '90' on
Tres Corona in the Cacchione Clark did even better this time, receiving a '93' and
sending the Centenary faithful into a frenzy. The only thing that could conceivably
prevent the Cyclones from seven points and their first National Championship in 30
years was a difficult ride-off. But would the judges decide to test?
Alison Sims of Sweet Briar received an '80,' Sarah Scharf of Stanford an '81' and
Brittany Denton of Virginia Intermont an '84.' When all 18 riders were done everyone
awaited Ochs' next announcement. Ochs stated "There will be further testing." Then a
short time later he announced that "Numbers 192, 260, 327, 336 and 438 need to perform
the following test." Before he could announce the test several Centenary riders looked
at each other confused. Then they and the rest of the crowd with a program figured it
out within seconds. The Cyclones were going to be National Champions, as Clark's
number 166 was not part of the call-back. The difference between her '93' and Herman's
'86' was so great the judges tested from second through sixth only. Considering the
circumstances, members of the Centenary team did a good job of appearing reserved at
that moment, waiting until the placings were announced for an emotional outburst.
Following the test the open riders returned to the ring for the placings. Sixth
went to Scharf, giving Stanford a total of 16 and what would be a tie for third overall.
Fifth went to Lemanski, giving Purdue their only points of the contest. With this deuce
all 18 schools had scored at least two points. Fourth went to Herman, giving the Lyons
ten points to become the eighth team into double figures. Third went to Lubrano, which
allowed Penn State to tie Berry for seventh place at eight points each. The Reserve
Championship went to Denton, a senior from Atlanta, Georgia, which allowed Virginia
Intermont to tie Stanford for third
only two points behind defending champion Kentucky.
Then came the inevitable. Before Ochs could even get past her number, the Centenary
team, their fans and others were already applauding. When Clark's name was announced
the cheers came out. After many close calls Centenary had finally done it. The title
was heading east to Hackettstown, New Jersey. With 24 points Centenary had captured
their third National Championship in program history while setting the current record
for longest gap between IHSA hunter seat National Championships (30 years). However the
the last time Centenary won a national championship it was a second consecutive national
championship, and with Clark back for another season hopes should stay high that a
repeat is a real posibility.
|Lindsay Clark (who is essentially in the center of the photo, between Coaches Michael Dowling on
the left and Heather Clark - who is of no relation - on the right) won team open over fences to vault Centenary
College into first place with 24 points. The Cyclones had captured their 20th consecutive region title in 2008-09
but the current Centenary team is the only one in that span to also emerge as the IHSA Hunter Seat National Champion.
Before the presentation of the National Championship trophy took place
there was more work to be done. Clark and nine others competed in the
work-off phase of the Cacchione Cup division, with Clark becoming the
second Centenary rider in program history to capture the cup. Two more
individual hunter seat classes took place before it was time for the
ribbon ceremony. Because ties are recognized at IHSA Nationals, tenth
place went to both West Texas A & M and Sweet Briar College with five
points each. Ninth place went to the University of Wisconsin at Madison
with six while eighth went to Lafayette College with seven. Berry College
and Penn State tied for seventh with eight points apiece while Mount
Holyoke had the green ribbons all to themselves with ten points (it
should be noted that only one set of ribbons was on-hand for each placing,
resulting in each team which tied for a specific placing taking turns
being photographed with the ribbons. A second set was to be mailed out).
Findlay was fifth with 13 points while the College of Charleston improved
by three points and two placings over their '08 showing with 14 and
fourth, respectively. Virginia Intermont College and Stanford finished
way ahead of their '08 totals, with VI up from seven points and Stanford
up from four to tie for third with 16 each. Kentucky scored only three
fewer points than at the LAEC but had to settle for the Reserve
Championship. Still with Cibon back for two more seasons and no worse
than second place at each of the two most recent championships the future
looks bright in Lexington for some time to come.
Then it was Centenary's turn. The Cyclones received their ribbons and
many other gifts awarded to the IHSA National Champion. Coaches Michael
Dowling and Heather Clark (the latter who coached Lafayette the past five
seasons) deserve kudos for finally
bringing the Cyclones to the promised land. Campus Equestrian feels that
former Coach Andrea Wells should also receive kudos. Now the Assistant
Director of the riding program at Savannah College of Art & Design, Wells
was at Centenary from the fall of 1994 through mid-2008 and coached the
majority of the Cyclone riders in attendance. However if any one
individual was the spark for their championship it was Lindsay Clark, who
changed the momentum of the entire show with her Cacchione riding on day
two. Save for Bogatko the rest of the Centenary team class riders are
eligible to return in 2009-10, and sometimes momentum can carry over from
the last class at one Nationals to the first class at the next one.
However if home field advantage means anything then let it be duly noted
that 2010 Nationals will be held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington.
The IHSA should charge admission for that one.
The 2009 IHSA Nationals Hunter Seat Team Class-by-Class Results. The
first five classes listed were held Thursday, April 23rd, the next two were
held Friday, April 24th and the final class on Saturday, April 25th. The
Judges for all 2009 IHSA Nationals hunter seat classes were Pamela Hunt and
Team Novice Equitation Over Fences: 1. Lauren Patterson, University of
Kentucky. 2. Kara Wintz, University of Findlay. 3. Chelsea Jones, Skidmore
College. 4. Anna Getz, West Texas A & M University. 5. Julie Connors,
Centenary College. 6. Amanda Shamer, Virginia Intermont College.
Team Intermediate Equitation On the Flat: 1. Caitlin Smith, College of
Charleston. 2. Karen Kearney, University of Wisconsin at Madison.
3. Kathryn King, University of Southern California. 4. Ali Krecker,
Centenary College. 5. Lindsay Baker, University of Findlay. 6. Heather
McPheeters, Sweet Briar College.
Team Novice Equitation On the Flat: 1. Kelsey Work, Lafayette College.
2. Brittany Cunnane, Centenary College. 3. Chelsea Dressler, Virginia
Intermont College. 4. Sarah Guidice, University of Findlay. 5. Rebecca
Hart, West Texas A & M University. 6. Elizabeth Leduc, Berry College.
Team Open Equitation On the Flat: 1. Jennifer Wilkins, Skidmore
College. 2. Ali Cibon, University of Kentucky. 3. Amanda Pettengill,
Mount Holyoke College. 4. Sarah Scharf, Stanford University. 5. Suzanne
Snyder, St. Lawrence University. 6. Elizabeth Gilberti, Brown University.
Team Walk-Trot-Canter Equitation: 1. Sarah Lawrence, Berry College.
2. Chase Hickok, Stanford University. 3. Elizabeth Kunz, University of
Kentucky. 4. Alexandra McGuire, Skidmore College. 5. Kim Nichols, Mount
Holyoke College. 6. Krista Hayes, Virginia Intermont College.
Team Intermediate Equitation Over Fences: 1. Marissa Cohen, Centenary
College. 2. Crystal Threlfall, College of Charleston. 3. Paige Kaylor,
Sweet Briar College. 4. Mary Margaret Fly, University of Findlay.
5. Katie Kearney, University of Kentucky. 6. Joyce Williams, University
of Wisconsin at Madison.
Team Walk-Trot Equitation: 1. Alex Jacobs, Stanford University.
2. Michelle Wynn, Virginia Intermont College. 3. Andrew Kennedy, Penn
State University (State College). 4. Rebecca De Sa, Brown University.
5. Erica Carson, College of Charleston. 6. Sarah Brady, Mount Holyoke
Team Open Equitation Over Fences: 1. Lindsay Clark, Centenary
College. 2. Brittany Denton, Virginia Intermont College. 3. Elizabeth
Lubrano, Penn State University (State College). 4. Cassie Herman, Mount
Holyoke College. 5. Laura Lemanski, Purdue University. 6. Sarah Scharf,
2009 IHSA Nationals Hunter Seat Team Totals:
Centenary College - 24 (2009 IHSA National Champion)
University of Kentucky - 18 (2009 Reserve National Champion)
Stanford University - 16
Virginia Intermont College - 16
Skidmore College - 14
College of Charleston - 14
University of Findlay - 13
Mount Holyoke College - 10
Berry College - 8
Penn State University (State College) - 8
Lafayette College - 7
University of Wisconsin at Madison - 6
Sweet Briar College - 5
West Texas A & M University - 5
University of Southern California - 4
Brown University - 4
Purdue University - 2
St. Lawrence University - 2