Mutton Busters Shine at First Night of the Nacogdoches Rodeo
It was a beautiful evening as night number one of the Nacogdoches Pro Rodeo and Steer Show kicked off at the Nacogdoches County Expo Center. Scores of PRCA cowboys and cowgirls competed in rodeo events such as barrel racing, bronc riding, bull riding, and more.
The rodeo was great, but so was the pre-rodeo entertainment. I'm talking about the mutton bustin' competition presented by KICKS 105 and Deep East Texas Electric Co-op.
This year's event started off with a bittersweet and touching scene. For many years, James 'Hambone' Hamby has been the official scorer of the mutton bustin' competition at the Nacogdoches Rodeo. Sadly, he passed away in the Summer of 2021. However, he was honored before the competition got underway Thursday night and a plaque was presented to Pam Hamby.
Fifteen mutton busters competed on night number one at the rodeo. In years past, 10 riders have ridden each night, but this year, an extra five have been added to the competition.
The fifteen riders for night number one included:
- JACK STROUD – 4 - NACOGDOCHES
- RHYVER WHITTINGTON -7 - NACOGDOCHES
- RAYLON WEEMS – 6 – GARRISON
- DASHLEN ARREGUIN – 7 – CUSHING
- KENNAH HAIRGROVE – 5 – GARRISON
- KOOPER SELMAN – 4 – LUFKIN
- REX WITTPENN - 3 – NACOGDOCHES
- LIAM TAYLOR IV – 4 – GARRISON
- IVAN GUARDADO – 5 – LUFKIN
- VAN THOMPSON
- CAYSON FERGUSON – 6 – CHIRENO
- JAX THOMPSON – 6 – LUFKIN
- LATHAN MORA – 5 – GARRISON
- PARKER WHITTON – 5 - ETOILE
- CAROLINE HUGHES – 5 – NACOGDOCHES
When the dust settled from the last ride, it was Lathan Mora's 74-point ride that took home the top honors and the championship buckle. Rhyver Whittington also deserves recognition as his sheep decided that slamming full speed into a gate was a good thing.
Check out the photos from the riders below as well as the video of their rides.