Mississippi College’s equestrian team launches its fourth season with a roster loaded with 11 freshmen plus a few seasoned riders ready to saddle up in August.
Led by head coach Becky Baumel, the MC team is dominated by Mississippians, but the Baptist-affiliated university has also recruited student-athletes from Maryland, Florida, Ohio and Arkansas.
MC sophomore Kathryn Cawthon, 19, of Brandon predicts another solid year ahead as the team gears up for practices at their Providence Hill Farm headquarters this fall. “We have great horses in the barn,” she said.
A Northwest Rankin High graduate, Cawthon says the addition of former star MC riders like Meredith Guider to the coaching staff is a big plus. Guider put Mississippi College in the limelight with stellar performances at the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association’s Nationals before the Utica resident graduated with a business degree last year.
The equestrian team “was one of the main reasons why I came to MC,” says Cawthon, who’s been a horse lover and rider since she was a ten-year-old. “The equestrian team is great and it’s a lot of fun.”
Other members of the team include 49-year-old MC senior Gloria Wells of Clinton. A former assistant teacher for ten years, Wells is an elementary education major on the Clinton campus. A full-time mom, the Clinton High graduate grew up on a family farm with horses. Wells says she’s not just learning how to ride a horse at MC. “They also teach us how to groom a horse.”
The 2010-2011 season begins with the Providence Hill Farm Show on September 25. Other events in the fall lineup include IHSA horse shows at Sewanee, TN October 9-10 followed by the Maryville Show in Friendsville, TN Oct. 23-24. In-between the two road trips will be the Octoberfest Show at Canton, MS Oct. 15-17.
The Murray State University IHSA Show in Kentucky is among the 2011 events on March 5-6 before regional competition the following week at Sewanee, TN.
Other Mississippians on the team include: Caroline Brock, Emily Dunaway, Courtney Evans, and Heather Hays ,all of the Jackson area, Stephanie Brislin of Ocean Springs, Addie Case of Brookhaven, Julie Cunningham of Columbia, Audra Johnson of Holcomb, LeeAnn Smith of Seminary and Josie Taylor of Petal. Out-of-staters include: Mary Elizabeth Hamilton of Maryland, Leah Katynski of Orlando, FL, Allison Newman of Jonesboro, AR and Sierra McAvoy of Ohio.
For more information on the equestrian team, contact Coach Becky Baumel at Providence Hill Farm at 601-925-0557 or contact the MC athletic department at 601-925-3341 or visit www.mc.edu