The No. 2 Georgia equestrian team hosted its annual Red and Black Scrimmage on Friday at the UGA Equestrian Complex with the Red Team defeating the Black Team, 11-6.
Sixteen freshmen competed in the scrimmage, experiencing the collegiate competition format for the first time. Highlighting the meet was Emily Leins (Equitation Over Fences), Alex Mougalian (Equitation on the Flat), Maddie Fiorante (Horsemanship) and Kyndall Harper (Reining) who won MOP honors. Immediately following competition, the 2017 SEC Championship team was honored with a ring ceremony.
— Georgia Equestrian (@UGAEquestrian) September 23, 2017
“It feels like a much needed step,” Georgia head coach Meghan Boenig said. “I think the moment after you get any kind of ring or awards you have to go back to work tomorrow. Getting out in the ring to scrimmage and putting on the pressure is absolutely what we need to be doing. I am really impressed with a lot of great rides. I saw some nerves in some places, which you expect, but those are now teachable moments. The first time you put that red and black on, and you’re competing for something other than yourself, is quite a difference for these ladies.”
The Red Team jumped to a 4-1 advantage in Equitation Over Fences. Freshman Isabelle Heckler led off for the Red Team with a 74-65 defeat of junior Madison Newman, before sophomore Kate Kramer bested junior Jessica Blum, 79-73. Leins took the lone point for the Black Team with a 77-75 defeat of fellow freshman Hayley Hall. The Red Team took the final two points of the event with sophomore Maddy Darst and freshman Emma Dienst riding to scores of 84 and 70, respectively.
The squads split points in Horsemanship. The Black Team’s Lila Owens edged Lauren Hull, 69-68.5. Senior Ashlyn Lawrence and sophomore Alyssa Luckhardt rode to a tie with a score of 68. Sophomore Maddie Fiorante bested freshman Lexie Lane, 72-70.5, to earn another point for the Black Team. The Red Team claimed the next two points with freshman Molly Moden edging junior Maddie Anger, 68.5-67.5, and Chaney Getchell defeated freshman Hannah Bader, 61.5-60.5.
The Red Team held a 6-3 advantage at the conclusion of two events.
The teams also split points in Equitation on the Flat. Heckler and Mougalian started the event riding to a tie score of 84. The Black Team earned the first point after sophomore Ali Tritschler rode to an 81-67 defeat of freshman McKenzie Maloney. Charlotte Anguiano and Stella Martin earned the next two points for the Red Team, before freshman Carter Anderson rode to a high score of 85 to top sophomore Grace Bridges’ 82.
The Red Team sealed the win in Reining, defeating the Black Team 3-1. Kyndall Harper outscored Shaelyn Vering, 66.5-60.5 to earn the first Red Team point. Freshman Jordan Carpenter and sophomore Julia Spreng rode to a tie of 68.5. Kristy Barrett earned the next point for the Red Team, edging Taylor Staton, 64-63. Graysen Stroud of the Black Team scored a 67 to better Annabeth Payne’s score off 66. Emily Clark closed competition earning the final point for the Red Team.
The 2017-18 season will officially begin on the road as Georgia travels to Fresno State. The two Bulldog teams will square off on Friday, September 29. Georgia’s home opener is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 13 at 11 a.m. against SEC rival and No. 1-ranked Texas A&M.