Days of '47: Utahn on top in go-round
On a Utah-flavored Monday night at the Days of '47 Rodeo, bull rider Hutch Haslam left EnergySolutions Arena with a good taste in his mouth.
Haslam, who is from Morgan, finished his ride aboard Bullistic and earned 86 points. He moved into second place in the overall Days of '47 standings with only two performances remaining.
"It was great," Haslam said. "I'm pretty excited about it. I didn't know nothing about [the bull], but it worked out."
Haslam's performance was one of his best this season, which started slowly, in part because of an injury suffered in a rodeo at Moab.
"I got kicked in the head and took June off," he said. "... But things are going pretty good right now."
Asked if he suffered a concussion, Haslam smiled, shook his head and said, "I don't really know. I didn't go get it checked."
Payson's Steve Woolsey didn't fare as well as Haslam in the third performance of the Days of '47.
Riding a bull named Big Rog, Woolsey stayed aboard for six seconds before getting into trouble and being tossed into the dirt.
"I didn't really care for the bull I had tonight," Woolsey said. "He's a younger bull and he just sort of squirted out there and didn't have much kick. He tried to fall down in his hind end. He just wasn't much help."
Only two nights earlier, Woolsey won the second go-round and the average title at the Snake River Stampede in Nampa, Idaho. He earned just over $7,100 and moved into 13th place on the season money list.
The top 15 qualify for the National Finals Rodeo in December something Woolsey has already done six times in his career.
"It's been pretty good the last few weeks," Woolsey said. "I just have to keep making money so I can stay on top."
For Woolsey, the performance at Nampa was a welcome one.
After suffering a serious pelvic injury last year at Rapid City and finishing 66th on the money list with earnings of only $17,000, he is finally beginning to feel better.
"I had a bull step on my hips," Woolsey said. "I landed on my hands and knees and he stepped on my hips. I tore all the muscles off my pelvis, so they had to reattach them. It's been a battle getting back, but lately I feel a little like the old Steve again."
Besides Haslam, four other bull riders completed their ride on a night when Gov. Gary Herbert attended the Days of '47. Three of them are from Utah. Joe Frost of Randlett posted a 77, Shawn Proctor of Tooele used a re-ride to score a 73 and Travis Atkinson of Lehi managed a 68.
Wesley Silcox of Santaquin, the 2007 world champion who is battling to get back to his seventh National Finals Rodeo, leads the Days of '47 bull riding after posting a score of 89 on Friday night.
1. Will Lowe (Canyon, Texas), 86; 2. Colt Kitaif (Lake Charles, La.) and Morgan Heaton (Paradise, Utah), 79.
1. Tyler Pearson (Louisville, Miss.), 3.8; 2. Stockton Graves (Alva, Okla.), 3.9; 3. Drew Slade (Brooklyn, Miss.), Riley Duvall (Checotah, Okla.) and Matt Reeves (Cross Plains, Texas), 4.6.
1. J.C. Malone (Roy, Utah), 8.1; 2. Ryle Smith (Oakdale, Calif.), 8.2. No other times.
1. Steven Dent (Mullen, Neb.), 89; 2. Spencer Wright (Milford, Utah), 86; 3. Isaac Diaz (Desdemona, Texas), 84.
1. Jimmy Tanner (Tifton, Ga.) and Shawn Harris (Searcy, Ark.), 4.7. No other times.
1. Nancy Hunter (Neola, Utah), 13.69; 2. Sarah Kieckhefer (Prescott, Ariz.), 13.71; 3. Marvel Murphy (Las Vegas, Nevada), 13.82.
1. Hutch Haslam (Morgan. Utah), 86; 2. Joe Frost (Randlett, Utah), 77; 3. Shawn Proctor (Tooele, Utah), 73.
If you go
O What • Days of '47 Rodeo
Where • EnergySolutions Arena
Days • Tuesday and Wednesday
Time • 6:30 p.m.
Tickets • ESA box office, Smith's Tix