Silver Creek cowboy Trey Engel is making a comeback.
The Mid-Plains Community College sophomore won the bull riding at the Will Lantis Yellow Jacket Stampede hosted by Black Hills State University in Spearfish, S.D. on Friday and Saturday.
He placed second at the same rodeo last year, gaining points that set him on the path to nationals as the top bull rider in the region.
This season hasn't gone as well. Out of the past seven rodeos leading up to the Yellow Jacket Stampede, Engel only placed at one – the MPCC Stampede in September.
"We've got two rodeos left, and he will have to do well at those to make it to nationals this year," said Elliott. "It was good to see him get some things turned around – things you would expect from a defending regional champion."
The team also had two second place finishes at Spearfish - Reece Weber, of Valentine, in the tie down roping and Lane Kennedy, of Orleans, Neb., in the saddle bronc riding.
"There's another one that really stepped up to what we've been expecting from him," said Elliott. "Lane can stay on the horses, but has been missing them out."
In the team roping, Wyatt Killion, of Ainsworth, placed third. Charmane Macomber, of Whitman, was fourth and Chandler Comfort, of Gem, Kan., finished fifth.
Rowdy Moon, of Sargent, ended up fourth in the bareback riding. Coming in at sixth place was Riley Weehler, of Maloy, Iowa, in the tie down roping and Tyler Murray, of Wheaton, Kan., in the steer wrestling.
For the second rodeo in a row, MPCC finished third in the men's team standings.
"It was the first time all six of our point members got points at the same rodeo," said Elliott. "There were some missed opportunities, but we still have two rodeos left. We lost some ground at Spearfish, but still have the lead in the regional men's team standings."
The team will compete again on Friday and Saturday at the Hastings College Rodeo in Hastings.