(AP) — Clay Tryan and Travis Graves took the top spot in the team roping world standings Thursday night, finishing second in the first round of the National Finals Rodeo with a 4.3-second run.
Header Tryan, from Billings, Mont., and heeler Graves, from Jay, Okla., have each earned $129,072 this season. They passed header Derrick Begay of Seba Dalkai, Ariz., and heeler Cesar de la Cruz of Tucson, Ariz., who stayed at $118,754 after they finished ninth in 9.7 and failed to earn checks.
Header Matt Sherwood of Pima, Ariz., and heeler Cory Petska of Marana Ariz., won the round in 4.1. They moved into third in the world standings with $105,475 for Sherwood and $116,242 for Petska.
"Everybody comes here trying to win a championship," said Sherwood, a two-time world champion. "I've been very fortunate here. You have to just take it night by night and evaluate your position late in the week about round nine or 10. Until then, plans don't mean much."
In bareback riding, world standings leader Kaycee Feild of Payson, Utah, won with an 89 on Bitter Robin. Feild has earned $158,544. Second-place Will Lowe of Canyon, Texas, who didn't place among the top six and earn a check during the first round, has made $137,634.
"I knew I had enough horse to beat Casey's (Colletti's) 87.5 (second place) if I could just do my job out there," Feild said. "I'm glad it worked out and I got the week off to a good start.
"I'm always thinking about winning the world title. The last two months not a day went by that I didn't think about it. I don't think you can get too pumped up when it comes to riding bareback horses. I was definitely ready to go."
In steer wrestling, Jason Miller of Lance Creek, Wyo., tied for the round win in 3.9 seconds to move into second place in the world standings. Trevor Knowles of Mount Vernon, Ore., matched Miller.
Standings leader Dean Gorsuch of Gering, Neb., didn't place among the top six with a time of 4.5. Gorsuch has earned $100,511, while Miller has made $99,715.
"It's tight. Whoever does their job the best this week is going to come out on top," Miller said. "Least mistakes win, and I feel confident. We got kicked off on the right foot."
In saddle bronc riding, Wade Sundell of Boxholm, Iowa, remained in third place in the world standings by winning the first round with an 85.5 on Goin South.
Standings leader Taos Muncy of Corona, N.M., stayed in first at $155,443, while Cody Wright of Milford, Utah, placed fifth with an 83 on Queenie and remained second with $152,556. Sundell is third with $131,666.
In tie-down roping, Cody Ohl of Hico, Texas, extended his event record to 41 rounds with a time of 7.5 and climbed from sixth to third in the world standings with $98,225.
Tuf Cooper of Decatur, Texas, increased his first-place total to $149,061 by tying for fifth in 7.9. Hunter Herrin of Apache, Okla., who didn't earn a check in the first round, is second with $114,946.
In barrel racing, world standings leader Brittany Pozzi of Victoria, Texas, and second-place Lindsay Sears of Nanton, Alberta, tied for first with times of 14.03.
Pozzi stayed in first with $131,282, while Sears remained second with $121,316.
In bull riding, world standings leader Shane Proctor of Grand Coulee, Wash., placed second with an 84.5 on Crunch Time and remained first with $185,983.
Seth Glause of Cheyenne, Wyo., finished first with an 86.5 on Gangster.