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NFR Day 2: Miles City roper Haven Meged bounces back in second round

Haven Meged
Posted at 9:48 PM, Dec 09, 2023

LAS VEGAS — The second round of the 2023 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo on Saturday was a collective improvement for Montana's competitors versus Friday's first round.

In all, five with Treasure State ties won second-round money on Day 2 of the 10-day event at the Thomas & Mack Center, a night after three cashed checks in the opening round.

Among them was Miles City's Haven Meged, who bounced back in a big way in Round 2 by placing second in tie-down roping with a time of 7.4 seconds to claim $24,268.

It was a big rebound for Meged, the world's No. 3-ranked tie-down roper, whose 8.8-second time during Friday's first round wasn't good enough to place. Caleb Smidt of Bellville, Texas, edged Meged on Saturday with a time of 7.3 seconds on Saturday to win the round.

In saddle bronc, Deer Lodge's Chase Brooks scored an 85-point ride for the second night in a row, good for a third-place tie and a check of $13,042. Melstone's Sage Newman scored 79.5 and finished out of the money.

Tanner Butner of Daniel, Wyo., was the Round 2 saddle bronc winner, scoring a ride of 87 points.

Meanwhile, Lisa Lockhart of Oelrichs, S.D. and formerly of Circle, raced to a time of 13.67 atop her horse Levee to place third in barrel racing in Round 2 on Saturday and claim a $18,325 payout. Stevi Hillman of Granbury, Texas, won barrel racing on Saturday with a time of 13.62.

At the outset of the night, Richmond Champion of Stevensville had a solid ride of 84.0 to place fourth in bareback riding for the second straight round and claim $10,401. Rocker Steiner of Weatherford, Texas, won his second gold buckle in as many nights, taking the event with a stellar ride of 88.5.

Helena's Ty Erickson failed to place in Round 2 in steer wrestling, finishing with a time of 8.3 seconds. But Jesse Brown, a former Montana State University cowboy who hails from Baker City, Oregon, took second place with a run of 4.1 seconds to pocket $21,296.

Stan Branco of Chowchilla, Calif., won the steer wrestling round with a time of 3.9 seconds.

Elsewhere, Clint Summers (Lake City, Florida) and Jake Long (Coffeyville, Kansas) took the team roping competition for the second consecutive night, clocking a winning time of 3.8 seconds.

In bull riding, Jared Parsonage of Maple Creek, Saskatchewan, won with a ride of 87.5 atop Barnes PRCA Rodeo's Umm.

Round 3 of the NFR will take place Sunday night at the Thomas & Mack Center.