SAU has strong showing at IHSA Nationals
Raleigh, N.C. – The St. Andrews University equestrian program hosted the 2012 Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) National Championship at the Raleigh Fairgrounds over the last week.
In addition to hosting, both the Hunt Seat and Western teams for St. Andrews competed for the National titles just one week after the Dressage team earned seventh at the Intercollegiate Dressage Association (IDA) National Championship.
“It is quite an accomplishment for us to have teams competing at the National Championships for all three disciplines – dressage, western and hunter seat,” said Equestrian Program Director Peggy McElveen.
St. Andrews tied for eighth place with four other teams in the Hunt Seat competition in the 16-team field.
“It’s really exciting because a lot of my riders had their personal best in this horse show,” said Hunt Seat Coach Ashley Duda. “There was a lot of good riding and I’m very proud of my students.”
The Western Team tied for fourth in the nation with Berry College.
“It’s all about the journey but this is the icing on the cake,” said Western Coach Carla Wennberg. “I have the best students in the world, and they are not only tremendous individuals in their character, but they have also worked really hard to get here. I can’t tell you how proud I am.”
McElveen earned the Pioneer Award, a recognition given only when “a deserving recipient rises above the hundreds of volunteers who make up the IHSA.”
Wennberg was awarded the Coach’s Sportsmanship Award for “being a dedicated participant in IHSA, a great teacher and coach, as well as making sure the care of the horses comes first.”
St. Andrews rider Shannon Leggett received the Rider Sportsmanship Award for “all her hard work and good attitude throughout the week, demonstrating leadership, care for the horses, as well as competing.”
Kali Cram received the Versatility Award for competing and placing well in both Hunt Seat and Western at the National Championship.
The recognitions for St. Andrews riders continued for their performance in the ring. Dugan McDermott earned Grand Champion in Team Walk/Jog while Shannon Leggett was American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) National Reserve High Point Champion.
“I set out to be the team open reiner and win high point, but all I wanted to do was make Carla proud,” said Leggett of the finish.
Amber Powell was Reserve Champion in Individual Walk/Jog.
Brittany Powell was third in Team Novice Horsemanship. Fourth place finishes were contributed by Kali Cram in Team Intermediate Over Fences and Shiloh Kozlowski in Team Walk/Trot.
“The competition is at a whole new level, when you’re at home you work really hard but when it’s here everybody is good so you really have to be the best of the best,” said Cram. “It’s very rewarding to go home with fourth.”
Leggett was fifth in AQHA Open Reining as were Kali Cram in Team Advanced Horsemanship and Michelle Hustad in Team Open Horsemanship.
Miranda Wright was sixth in Team Walk/Trot/Canter. Leggett added a seventh place in NRHA Individual Open Reining with Katie Hansen seventh in Individual Open Equitation on the Flat. Katie Mosca was eighth in Team Intermediate Horsemanship. Sami Cram was ninth in Team Novice Equitation Over Fences.
Alie McGraw, Kayla McBath, Kali Cram, Sami Cram, and Katie Hansen earned honorable mentions in their respective classes.
About St. Andrews University
St. Andrews is a student and teaching-focused University which offers a broad range of undergraduate majors in a curriculum that is global in scope and practical in its application. The quality of the St. Andrews educational experience has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report, The Princeton Review, and GI Jobs among others. In addition to its academic programs, the University has an acclaimed university press, men’s and women’s athletic teams, a nationally competitive equestrian program, and an award-winning pipe band. St. Andrews is a branch of Webber International University, Florida. Further information may be obtained by visiting the University’s website www.sapc.edu, calling 800-763-0198, or sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.