The Maryville College Equestrian Team consists of talented horses and women who have the ability and skill it takes to ride them. Over a decade ago, the team made nationals, and this year it was their goal to make it again.
The team had the chance to send two of their captains to a major show that is similar to the nationals, and they were looking to bring home trophies.
Other colleges participated in the competition such as the University of Kentucky, Belmont University, Vanderbilt and many more from around the region. The difficulty level of this show was extreme and the two captains were looking to bring the fire. Tiffany Bryant and Taylor Mundelein were the two riders from MC who competed.
Bryant competed in the Alumni Equitation over Fences and placed fifth out of many contestants. Mundelein competed in the Individual Novice Equitation on the Flat and placed 10th.
“This particular zone show is similar to the difficulty of the nationals because we had to ride against Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD),” Mundelein said.
SCAD has been the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) national champion team almost every year in the past. Even though the expectations were high, and the MC riders did well, only the top two riders move on to the nationals. This year was a great run and the Maryville College Equestrian team has many more years ahead of them.
The team has come a long way and is looking to make a little noise next year with the class coming in.
“I am very proud of what we were able to accomplish. For many of us, riding is our passion. There is nothing else to do but get better and better,” said Jaqueline Stump, member of the Equestrian team at Maryville said.
The next competition that the Maryville team will face will kick off the 2017-2018 show year and will be held at the University of the South in September. The two captains explained that the new freshmen will have to go through a two week boot camp that will get them prepared to ride in the competition.
The Maryville College Equestrian Team started in 1994 and has led to many successes for the team and an appearance in the nationals in 2006. The hope is for the team to make it to the nationals next season with a little more experience under their belt.
There will also be a show at the Penrose Farm April 8-9. It will be the ETHJA show that will be put on for anyone who would like to come support the riders.