UMW News BureauMontana Western Rodeo will begin April 2 to 5 at the Montana State University spring rodeo. Ranked first in the Big Sky Region and 13th in the nation, Montana Western Rodeo looks forward to the coming season. By Wally Feldt The University of Montana Western Rodeo team opens their spring season in Bozeman, Mont. at the Montana State University spring rodeo, Thursday through Saturday, April 2 to 5 at the MSU Field House. There are evening performances Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m.; slack performances Friday at 10 a.m. and Sunday at 8 a.m. The top ten in each event compete Saturday at 2 p.m. The Montana Western men’s team is ranked first in the Big Sky Region and 13th in the nation. Wyatt Smith leads the region in all-around competition and Willie Burns is third. Smith is second tie down roping, saddle bronc riding, steer wrestling, third in team roping, heeler and tied for 10th in bareback riding. Stetson Wilson leads the region in steer wrestling while Brett Heggie is tops in tie down roping. The Montana Western women’s team open the second half of the season in second place in the region. Brandy Pedersen is fourth in the region in barrel racing and Rose Fields is fourth in breakaway roping. Shaylee French is third in the region in goat tying. There are five rodeos in the spring season. Montana Western looks to qualify both teams for the College Nationals Rodeo (CNFR) in Casper, Wyo. June 14-20, 2009. The top two teams in the men’s and women’s standings qualify for the CNFR.