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July 14, 2013

Velma boys rope their way to U.S. team finals

VELMA — Two Velma youths have earned their places in the United States team roping finals in Oklahoma City.

Brodie Williams, 14, and Tyler Ray, 17, won the 9-point team roping competition at the Oklahoma Roping Championship on July 6 at the Lazy E arena in Guthrie. Williams also won the 10-point team roping competition with Kent Thiessen of Elk City.

“I was kind of nervous when the next two were up,” Ray said. “It was an adrenaline rush.”

Each rodeo participant has a point or a ranking, which determines the point competition they could enter with a partner. For instance, when the Oklahoma Roping Championships took place, Williams was at 4 points and Ray was at 5. Together, they could enter a 9-point team roping category.

Scott Williams, Brodie Williams’ father, said his son’s rank went up to 5 points, which means Brodie Williams and Ray will no longer be able to enter a 9-point competition together. Instead, they can enter a 10-point contest instead.

That also means Brodie Williams will no longer be able to team up with Thiessen, a 6-point competitor, in the 10-point competition.

In April, both Velma boys won team roping contests in the Heart of Oklahoma Youth Rodeo Assocation also at the Lazy-E, which Scott Williams said is one of the largest indoor rodeo arenas in the world.

Brodie Williams said he was excited to take first place in both competitions in the July 6 championships with his partners. He said he wasn’t sure how confident he felt going into each competition, but was glad to come out on top.

“It was kind of surprising,” Williams said.

There were between 375 to 380 teams in the 9-point competition. And the 10-point competition was about the same.

For winning the contests, the boys received saddles and money. Williams took home two saddles for winning two competitions. Williams also got the fastest time in the 8-point.

Their pictures and what they won will be listed in the Super Looper, which is the United States Team Roping Championships (USTRC) magazine.

“We couldn’t have done it without our families or our horses,” Williams said.

Their next stop will be USTRC Finals in October. They will be at the Oklahoma State Fairgrounds in Oklahoma City, with the shoot-out competition taking place in Guthrie.

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