MOLINE, Ill.--The Adrian College equestrian program made team history over the weekend at the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association Semi-Final Stock Championships hosted by Black Hawk College, qualifying two riders in three events for the IHSA National Championships in two months. The national event will take place on Thursday through Saturday, May 3-6, in Harrisburg, Pa.
"Our team members had an amazing competition over the weekend. To say we're proud and excited about this is an understatement," stated second-year Adrian head coach Jody Prime.
Senior Rachel Kanaziz set a school record with two national qualifications in the same season, advancing in the reining and horsemanship events. Kanaziz, who is also the first Bulldog ever to appear at IHSA Nationals, placed fifth in the nation in the Western Novice Horsemanship during her 2016 debut in Lexington, Ky.
Junior Montana Whitehead set an equally impressive mark by capturing the coveted first-place ribbon and trophy belt buckle for her division in her first-ever semifinals competition.
Semi-Final qualifiers freshman Michaela Carnevale and sophomore Morgan Langworthy also shined in their events at Black Hawk College. Carnevale advanced out of her preliminary round into the finals of her class, placing eighth overall. Langworthy put in a solid performance for the Bulldogs, strengthening her resolve to qualify again for the semifinals next season. Senior Kelsey Suiter made her second semifinals appearance of her career, laying down a strong pattern in her reining class but falling short on earning a trip to Nationals. Suiter owns the distinction of being the first AC Bulldogs qualifier in the Advanced Horsemanship division for the Stock Seat Semi-finals Championships, where she finished in fifth place in Canyon, Texas.
Adrian boasted the most individual Stock riders--with five--out of nine colleges/universities competing in Zone 6, Region 4, breaking the school record of four set last season. The Bulldogs also set team benchmarks by having one of their riders win their overall division and sending the most competitors to Nationals in a single season.
Hunt team member Kari Klager, a junior, will compete in IHSA Zones--which is the semifinals-equivalent to Stock--at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio, on Saturday, April 7, with a strong chance to join her two other teammates in Harrisburg.
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