Host Universities Announced for the 2020 IHSA Western Semi-Finals

Thursday, December 5, 2019
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Black Hawk College Western Team-top.jpg

The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) has announced the locations for their Western Semi-Finals, sponsored by the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA), scheduled for March 21-22. The Semi-Finals are the decisive step for Western riders and teams to qualify for the IHSA National Championship Horse Show, April 30 – May 3 in Syracuse, New York. IHSA riders compete in a range of levels in Western horsemanship and in open reining.

Photo - The Black Hawk College Western Team at the 2018 Western Semi-Final Championships.
(Courtesy of Black Hawk College Equestrian)

“The Western Semi-Finals is an outstanding event that showcases amazing young athletes from all over the country," said NHRA senior director of corporate relations and communications Sammi Miller. "NHRA is proud to continue our support of IHSA."

Each region will send their regional champion Western team, plus the top two individuals in each division. From each Semi-Finals, the top four individuals per division and the top three teams will advance to Nationals.

Black Hawk College in Zone 7, Region 5 plays host to one Semi-Final at the Black Hawk College East Campus Ag Arena in Galva, Illinois. Kendra Weiss and Lisa Moden will officiate.

The Black Hawk College Western Equestrian Team was the 2018-19 High Point Western Team for its region. This is the team’s 16th consecutive IHSA Regional Championship. In 2008-09 Black Hawk College finished third place in the nation and was the only two-year college to field a team at Nationals.

Southern Nazarene University (SNU) from Zone 7, Region 2 will host judges Lori Gordon and Gretchen Mathes at the Semi-Finals at the Southern Nazarene Equestrian Center in Bethany, Oklahoma, to give the nod to the individuals and teams that will progress to Nationals.

The SNU Crimson Storm has a talented young roster who kicked off the 2020 season with eight top-three finishes at their first two shows of the season. Click here to learn more about the Crimson Storm.

West Virginia University (WVU) in Zone 2, Region 5, will host another Semi-Final with Darin Wright and Debbie Kail officiating at the JW Ruby Research Farm in Reedsville, West Virginia.

The WVU Western Equestrian Team is consistently in the top six schools in Zone 2 Region 5 of the IHSA. The WVU team also holds the title of Regional Reserve Champions for 2016-2017 and Grand Champions for 2015-2016 seasons. Click here to learn more about the team.

The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) welcomes men and women of all riding levels and offers individual and team competition in hunter seat equitation, Western horsemanship and reining at more than 400 member colleges and universities. Membership in IHSA means that college students can participate at horse shows regardless of their experience or financial status. Students compete at eight levels from beginner through advanced with suitable, provided horses, eliminating the expense of horse ownership. Founded in 1967 by Bob Cacchione, it is the oldest and largest intercollegiate equestrian organization with 10,000 members in 47 states and Canada. IHSA college and university team participation is represented through a variety of programs including varsity athletics, academic departments and club sports. IHSA offers valuable hands-on experience and professional development in multiple facets of the equine industry. Many IHSA teams participate in service projects, giving back to their communities. Through the IHSA, students enhance their college experience and develop the tools that help to build successful careers.

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