BISHOP, Ga. - The top-ranked Texas A&M equestrian team (1-1, 0-1 SEC) took three of four Most Outstanding Player (MOP) awards but dropped a 5-17 decision at co-No. 1 team Georgia (1-0, 1-0 SEC) in the first-ever SEC equestrian competition Sunday.
Seniors Emily Williams (fences) and Laura Brainard (horsemanship), and sophomore Laura Sumrall (reining) each earned MOPs but the Bulldogs won each discipline to come out ahead in the showing of top-ranked teams.
"This was obviously a very tough competition," head coach Tana McKay said. "We knew that going into today we would have to be flawless, especially when we are riding UGA's horses. We made a few big mistakes that were hard to come back from. I was very proud of a number of great rides that we did have as well as earning three of the four MOP awards from our judges."
The Aggies' lone victory in equitation over fences was Williams' MOP ride, an 84-81 win over Georgia's Sarah Milliren. UGA took a 5-1 lead after the event.
Caroline Ammons and MOP Laura Brainard each had A&M victories and Cassie Mantor and Molli Jacobs drew with their competitors in horsemanship. A 2-2 tie in that discipline (UGA led with a 434.5-431.5 score) kept the Bulldog lead at four points as the competition moved to equitation on the flat and reining with a 7-3 score.
Despite a one-point score difference during junior Paige Russell's ride for a score of 94, the Aggies were unable to take any victories in equitation on the flat. Freshman Hannah Williams was forced to re-ride after UGA's Caitlyn Francis' ride went under video review, but Williams fell to her competitor, 74-97. Francis was the equitation MOP.
Trailing the Bulldogs 13-3, the show entered reining, the final discipline. Sumrall took a 70-68.5 win and MOP honors for the Aggies' third distinction of the day. Senior Emma Myers also edged her competitor, 69.5-69.
The 5-17 loss is the first loss for the Aggies this season and in the SEC. The team travels to Auburn on Saturday, Oct. 13.
To learn more about Texas A&M equestrian, log on to AggieAthletics.com and follow @AggieEquestrian on Twitter.
A&M 5, GEORGIA 17
UGA Equestrian Complex - Bishop, Ga.
Records: A&M (1-1, 0-1 SEC), Georgia (1-0, 1-0 SEC)
HUNTER SEAT: UGA 11, A&M 1
over Fences: UGA 5, A&M 1
Megan Southam, UGA def. Kat Barkema, A&M, 82-76
Emily Williams (MVP), A&M def. Sarah Milliren, UGA, 84-81
Abby O'Mara, UGA def. Marlena Parker, A&M, 77-71
Carly Anthony, UGA def. Leah Chenelle, A&M, 85-83
Olivia Dorey, UGA def. Kori Pickett, A&M, 86-40
Kylee Arbuckle, UGA def. Shelby Lawson, A&M, 83-81
on the Flat: UGA 6, A&M 0
Kylee Arbuckle, UGA def. Kelsi Shevlin, A&M, 87-84
Grace Rogers, UGA def. Emily Williams, A&M, 92-82
Abby O'Mara, UGA def. Kristin Bell, A&M, 83-71
Caitlyn Francis (MVP), UGA def. Hannah Williams, A&M, 97-74
Olivia Dorey, UGA def. Paige Russell, A&M, 95-94
Carly Anthony, UGA def. Ellie Wilkins, A&M, 92-69
WESTERN: UGA 6, A&M 4
UGA 2 (434.5), A&M 2 (431.5)
Maria Salazar, UGA def. Carey Nowacek, A&M, 73-69.5
Cassie Mantor, A&M tied Sara Parr, UGA, 71-71
Molli Jacobs, A&M tied Anna Sasser, UGA, 72-72
Paige Stawicki, UGA def. Amanda Brightwell, A&M, 72.5-71.5
Caroline Ammons, A&M def. Heather Schmidt, UGA, 73-72.5
Laura Brainard (MVP), A&M def. Megan Hawkins, UGA 74.5-73.5
UGA 4, A&M 2
Laura Sumrall (MVP), A&M def. Becca Haaland, UGA, 70-68.5
Lauren Garmon, UGA def. Logan Pluhar, A&M, 67.5-65
Mckenzie Lantz, A&M def. Lindsey Bernbaum, A&M, 69.5-69
Emma Myers, A&M def. Michelina Carbone, UGA, 69.5-69
Sami Belcher, UGA, def. Becca Murray, A&M, 69.5-65.5
Lauren Tieche, UGA def. Ashley Skold, A&M, 69.5-69