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Department of Animal Sciences


Ohio State Western Equestrian Team Wins Reserve National Championship

photo courtesy of Lisa Giris, IHSA

The Ohio State Western Equestrian Team won the Reserve National Championship at the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) National Championship. The Western and Hunt Seat Equestrian Teams compete in the IHSA, which encompasses 40 Regions in eight zones, with more than 400 member colleges in 45 states and Canada.  The Ohio State teams have been very successful over the past several years, earning multiple national and reserve national titles.  The Western Equestrian Team has won 10 National Titles (’14, ’08, ’06, ’02,’99, ’97, ’96, 93, ’92, ’91) and is currently the most successful western team in the IHSA. 

The Western Equestrian Team had three individuals qualify to compete as individuals. To make it to Nationals as an individual, the rider must reach 36 points in their respective class at a qualifying competition. Finally, they must place in the top two at regionals and top four at semi-finals.

The three individual qualifiers and their placings in their respective events were:

  • Tricia Bellman (Fostoria, OH)- Beginner Western Horsemanship- 1st place
  • Erin Bosse (Findlay, OH)- Advanced Western Horsemanship- 6th place
  • Tyler Kirby (Grove City, OH)- Open Reining- 2nd place
    • 5th place overall in points

In addition to the individuals competing, additional members competed as part of a team for Ohio State. Team riders qualify based on their riding ability and riding consistency throughout the season. A team must make it to the top three at semifinals to move on to nationals.

Team riders and their placing in their respective events were:

  • Tori Gonzales (Dennison, OH)- Beginner Western Horsemanship- 1st place
  • Kimmy Hartman (Galloway, OH)- Intermediate Western Horsemanship- 7th place
  • Morgan Kiehl (Delaware, OH)- Novice Western Horsemanship- 5th place
  • Jillian Channell (Springfield, OH)- Advanced Western Horsemanship- 2nd place
  • Erin Bosse (Findlay, OH)- Open Western Horsemanship- 3rd place
  • Tyler Kirby (Grove City, OH)- Open Reining- 6th place

In addition to current students, Ohio State had several alumni (previous members of IHSA are eligible to qualify and compete) successfully compete:

  • Crister Cramer (’14, Arcadia, OH) – Alumni Western Horsemanship – 5th place
    • Alumni Reining – 8th place
  • Elisabeth Bianco (’13, Wadsworth, OH) – Alumni Western Horsemanship – 7th place
    • Alumni Reigning – 1st place

Debbie and Ollie Griffith coach the Ohio State Western Equestrian Team; Dr. Kim Cole, Animal Sciences associate professor, serves as the faculty advisor. The 2018 IHSA National Championships were in Harrisburg, PA, May 3-6, at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex.

photo courtesy of Lisa Giris, IHSA (L. to R.) Debbie Griffith (Coach), Tyler Kirby, Tori Gonzales, Jillian Channell, Kimberly Hartman, Ollie Griffith (Coach), Morgan Kiehl, Erin Bosse, and Tricia Bellman