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Golden Eagle Hunt Seat Equestrian Team Opens Season at UW-Madison on Saturday & Sunday
September 23, 2008

Contact: Chris Vito - Assistant Sports Information Director - (218)281-8445

(Crookston, Minn.)- The University of Minnesota, Crookston Hunt Seat Equestrian team will open the 2008-2009 season on Saturday, September 27 and Sunday, September 29 with a competition at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wis. Saturday’s competition will start at 1 p.m. while Sunday’s will get underway at 9 a.m.


The Golden Eagles are taking a total of 14 riders this weekend. Second-year coach Brooke Leininger is excited to start the season. “They have been practicing well and I expect them to be consistent and strong throughout the weekend,” says Coach Leininger.


Janice Holdvogt (So, Eden Valley, Minn.) is the only Walk-Trot rider representing the hunt seat team this weekend and Coach Leininger expects her to put in solid rides for the team. The five Walk-Trot-Canter riders are all seasoned competitors and several are expected to point up to Novice early in the season. Jenae Hanson (Sr, Andover, Minn.) had a great ride at the Zone Championships last season and will be a reliable top placer in her division. Novice Flat rider Paige Harty (Jr, Waseca, Minn.) is returning after an excellent Regional Championship finish last year and Coach Leininger expects her to do it again this year in the Novice Division. She also is looking for Nicole Veres (Jr, Random Lake, Wis.) to win out of the Novice Division this weekend and move up to Intermediate, qualifying her for Regionals early in the season. New this year, Kelsey Sherman (Fr, Lansing, Mich.) and Heather Fogelson (Fr, Grant, Wis.), are both exciting new additions to the team. They will be riding in Novice Jumping and Intermediate on the Flat. Tandra Klein (So, Hazen, N.D.), riding in Intermediate Over Fences and Novice on the Flat, is a seasoned competitor who is expected to do very well on any horse drawn. Ashley Copa (So, Fargo, N.D.) is proving to be more consistent in practices this year. Coach Leininger expects her to post top placings for the team. Jessica Biddle (Sr, Elburn, Ill.), competing for the Hunt Seat team for the first time, is another seasoned competitor who Coach Leininger hopes to see success from this weekend. Laura Critchett (So, Shoreview, Minn.) is returning for her second year in Open Jumping and Flat. Coach Leininger will be looking for her to put in solid performances this year and qualify for Regionals in the Open Division.


For more information, visit the Golden Eagle Athletics Web site at


The University of Minnesota, Crookston is a NCAA Division II Institution and a member of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference (NSIC). Golden Eagle Hockey is a member of the Midwest Collegiate Hockey Association (MCHA). The Golden Eagle Equestrian team is a member of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA).