Georgia Advances to Equestrian Semifinals

Equestrian semifinals

UGA Equestrian team huddles up prior to Georgia’s equestrian meet against South Carolina at the UGA Equestrian Complex in Bishop, Georgia on Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014 (Photo by John Kelley

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The No. 3 seed Georgia equestrian team defeated No. 6 seed Baylor 8-7 Friday afternoon at the Extraco Events Center in Waco, Texas and advanced to be equestrian semifinals. The semifinal round of competition scheduled to start at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, April 19.

 Georgia will face the No. 2 seed Oklahoma State. The teams have not met since the 2011-2012 season when Georgia dropped a 13-10 decision to the Cowgirls.  Georgia owns an 11-5 record and rode to a second place finish at the Southeastern Conference Championship. Oklahoma State is currently 11-3 and is the 2014 Big 12 Champion.

 “This team fought today,” said head coach Meghan Boenig. “Baylor rode extremely well, and not only that, they have been tremendous hosts. Early in the meet, we made some mistakes that left the door open a little bit. Those mistakes could have derailed us but these ladies fought tooth and nail for the win. They responded to the pressure and proved that they deserve to be here. I believe that the jitters are out and we are ready to step up tomorrow. Oklahoma State is a very strong team and we will have to continue to be driven and focused to get the win.”

 Georgia rode to a 2-2 tie in Equitation on the Flat. Liza Finsness took the first point of the competition, defeating Baylor’s Savannah Jenkins 160-150. The Bears picked up the next two points with winning rides from Sam Schaefer and Jenny Mitchell. Kylee Arbuckle knotted the score after putting up a 161-152 win over Alicia Gasser.

 In Reining, the Bulldogs dropped a 2-1 decision. Lauren Tieche scored a 145 and tied with Jessica Leach before McKenzie Lantz earned the lone point for the Bulldogs by beating Claire Edwards 145-139. Baylor took the final two points as Katie Berg and Shelbey Jackson put in winning rides.

 Georgia’s Fences squad rode to a 2-1 victory over Baylor. Finsness tied with Sam Schaefer with scores of 166 each. Savannah Jenkins took the next point for Baylor before Abby O’Mara outscored Paige Parker 164-158. Meg O’Mara sealed the event win for the Bulldogs after putting up a score of 165 over Alicia Gasser’s 153.

 With the overall score knotted 5-5, Georgia entered the final event of the day. Heather Schmidt put the first point on the board with an event high 149.5 over Bryn Lindley’s 148. Parris Rice took the next point for Baylor to tie up the score 6-6. Paige Stawicki and Gillian Chant rode to a 144-point draw. Anna Sasser claimed the final point for the Bulldogs with a 144.5-138.5 decision and ultimately clinched the 8-7 victory.

 For details on the 2014 NCEA National Championship, visit www.collegiateequestrian.com. Live scoring for the championship will be available on www.georgiadogs.com as well as updates on Twitter by following @UGAEquestrian.