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NCEA March Riders of the Month Announced

RELEASE: April 5, 2013
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: Cory Burkarth (University of South Carolina) for NCEA

Columbia, SC
– The National Collegiate Equestrian Association has selected its Riders of the Month for March, it was announced today. The student-athletes chosen for each of the four events are as follows:

• Horsemanship – Lauren DeVoe (New Mexico State)
• Reining – McKenzie Lantz (Georgia)
• Equitation on the Flat – Katherine Schmidt (South Carolina)
• Equitation Over Fences – Katherine Schmidt (South Carolina)

New Mexico State’s Lauren DeVoe was the nation’s top rider in Horsemanship during March. DeVoe went 3-0 in Horsemanship for the Aggies last month and was named Most Outstanding Player in Horsemanship for the Skyhawk Invitational. She went 2-0 at the inaugural tournament in Martin, Tenn., picking up wins over South Dakota State and Fresno State. DeVoe was recently recognized for her academic success at the Wells Fargo Academic Honor Night and the Crimson & White Scholar Banquet.

Georgia’s McKenzie Lantz was selected as the top rider in Reining, as she went 4-0 for the Bulldogs last month. Lantz started the month with a win over UT Martin, where she also was named Most Outstanding Player in the event. Lantz closed out the month winning three straight meets over Southeastern Conference opponents, and went 2-0 last week at the inaugural SEC Championships. Lantz has lost just one head-to-head competition this season.

South Carolina’s Katherine Schmidt swept both Hunt Seat honors, as the Gamecock sophomore was named Rider of the Month in both Equitation on the Flat and Equitation Over Fences.

In Equitation on the Flat, Schmidt went 5-0 and was the Flat selection to the SEC All-Championship Team. After picking up a home win over Delaware State on March 1, Schmidt won her next four Flat points away from Blythewood, as she earned victories at Kansas State, at Oklahoma State, and then went defeated both Auburn and Georgia at the SEC Championships in Auburn, Ala. Schmidt is 10-4 overall in Equitation on the Flat and is South Carolina’s leader in individual wins for the second year in a row.

In Equitation Over Fences, Schmidt went 5-0 with two MVP’s, giving her a March record of 10-0 in Hunt Seat action. Both of her MVP’s came on the road against Oklahoma State and Georgia. Schmidt picked up Over Fences victories against Delaware State, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Georgia and Auburn, as she was the only Gamecock to go 4-0 at the SEC Championships.

This is the final time this season that the NCEA will select riders of the month. This year's national championships will be held April 18-20 at the Extraco Events Center in Waco, Texas. It marks the seventh straight year that Baylor, the City of Waco and McLennan County have hosted the national championship. All of the action from the national championships will be available through the NCEA’s free web stream on www.collegiateequestrian.com.