Equestrian upsets No. 1 Baylor, swept by Texas A&M at NCEA Championships

TCU Equestrian competes at the NCEA Championships in Waco, Texas on April 15, 2017. (GOFROGS.com)

TCU Equestrian competes at the NCEA Championships in Waco, Texas on April 15, 2017. (GOFROGS.com)

By Dean Straka

TCU Equestrian rocketed out of the gate with an upset win over No. 1 Baylor on Friday before falling to No. 5 Texas A&M on Saturday at the NCEA Championship in Waco, Texas.

The Horned Frogs wasted no time in gaining an edge over the Bears in the quarterfinals, recording a 3-1 decision in Reigning via the performances of seniors Carley Montemuro and Brooke Boyle, and freshman Carly Lombard. The Frogs tallied a fourth point from junior Carley Barnett in Equitation over Fences before sweeping Horsemanship with a 3-0.

Needing just one point in Equitation on the Flat to secure the upset, senior Kari Hancock came through with a 172-point upstanding ride to give the Frogs a 9-7 quarterfinals victory. It was the first time in program history that the team knocked off the No. 1 seed at the NCEA Championships.

“Hats off to the Western girls for just going out and being strong start to finish all day, then it coming down to all the pressure on the Flat girls and coming up big,” director of equestrian Haley Schoolfield said.

The win was even more special for the team, considering it came against a rival on their home turf.

“Any time you beat Baylor, it’s a good day,” hunt seat head coach Logan Fiorentino said. “We had a tough season against them in the regular season but we were super, super close every single game. This one was the one that we needed, and the girls stepped up when it counted.”

Saturday’s semifinal outing didn’t have as sweet of a tune for TCU though, as the Frogs had no answers against Texas A&M in a 16-0 rout.

Boyle came close to recording points for the Frogs during Reigning but was defeated by a mere half-point from Sarah McEntire. The team suffered another heartbreaker in Horsemanship when senior Rylee Morgan also lost by a half-point.

The semifinal finish was still the second best in program history for TCU at the event.