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Six Riders Qualify for Zones as WildCats Complete Dominance of Region

The WildCats with their regional ribbons and regional championship trophy
The WildCats with their regional ribbons and regional championship trophy

For Immediate Release – 3/19/17 - #249
Six Riders Qualify for Zones as WildCats Complete Dominance of Region

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA – On Sunday, seven members of the Randolph College equestrian team competed at the Zone 4 Region 2 Championships.  Six of the seven riders advanced to the Zone 4 Championships with their impressive showings.

Regionals are an individual competition, with riders qualifying over the course of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) season (many riders earn the points needed over multiple years).  The top-two finishers in each class at regionals move on to the zone championships.

Rebecca Jones started the day off in the Walk/Trot class.  She was one of only two riders to compete, but she did not let that fact cloud what she came to do.  Jones rode perfectly, earning the blue ribbon for the title.  Michelle Smith was up next in Walk/Trot/Canter and she looked for the same result.  Smith controlled her horse very well, leaving a much larger class with a blue ribbon.

Flats continued the reverse order show, but the WildCats continued to have success.  Jaime Fordham and Madeline Davis rode in the Novice section.  Both had great rides, with Fordham earning a green ribbon.  However, neither will advance to zones in that qualification.

Eliza Gretok then rode in the Intermediate flat and she was terrific.  She earned a red ribbon with her second-place finish, and advanced to zones.  Morgan Hoke followed her in the Open flat, and she was outstanding in the saddle.  The senior advanced to the zone championships after leaving the ring with the blue ribbon.

Fences followed, with Davis riding in the Novice class, and Gretok and Kirby Tidmore riding in the Intermediate section.  Davis earned herself a spot at those championships with a tremendous ride.  She navigated the course very well and won the blue ribbon.  Gretok missed out in fences, but Tidmore did not.  She rode extremely well and picked up a red ribbon.

The six individuals will be the most the team has sent to zones since this format was instituted.  However, these six will not be alone, as the team will also compete at the show on April 8 at St. Andrews University, after winning the Zone 4 Region 2 title in February.  The 'Cats received the trophy at the show as well.

Prior to the zone championships, Randolph will compete at the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) championships on April 5 at Hollins University.