Bulldogs ride off with a national championship

Thought you’d like to know . . . the University of Georgia won a national championship Saturday night.

The Bulldogs, for the third year in a row and the fifth time in eight years, won the national title in equestrian.

UGA beat runnerup Texas A&M in a tiebreaker to win the overall title at the Varsity Equestrian National Championships in Waco, Texas.

The victory continued the remarkable success of Georgia’s equestrian program, which in its brief eight-year history already has amassed more national team championships than any UGA sport except gymnastics (10), men’s tennis (8) and women’s tennis (also 5). (Tennis championships include indoor and outdoor.)

Twenty-three Division I and II college athletics programs compete in equestrian, which is classified as an emerging sport by the NCAA.

Georgia equestrian coach Meghan Boenig’s reaction to her team’s latest championship (from a UGA release late Saturday night):

“This was just an incredible day and, I believe, the most special, most meaningful championship we’ve won so far. It was harder this year because the competition was so fierce. We had to fight for everything we got.”

Michelle Morris

Michelle Morris

Georgia also claimed two individual championships in Saturday’s competition: Michelle Morris won the title in Hunt Seat Equitation on the Flat, and Emma Lipman won the Equitation over Fences event. Both Morris and Lipman are sophomores.

Emma Lipman

Emma Lipman

In the team standings, Georgia and Texas A&M were tied after the Bulldogs won the Hunt Seat competition and finished fourth in the Western competition and the Aggies won the Western and finished fourth in Hunt Seat. The tie triggered a rideoff for the championship –- four head-to-head dual matches, one per event.

The teams split the four dual matches, with Georgia winning the championship on the basis of its 603.5-579 advantage in the aggregate raw scores of the events. The victory margin came from Morris’ 174-144 decision in her event.

Said Boenig:

“The girls were under such difficult circumstances [in the rideoff]. It was difficult enough to pick the right four riders, and I mostly went on just gut feeling. But I knew that any rider I chose was capable of making a standout impression.

“Michelle’s ride was great and it certainly put us in a favorable position, but we still needed three strong rides to maintain our margin. And we got them.”

For background on Georgia’s equestrian program, see this AJC article from last month.

Also: UGA notes,  including Mark Pope’s new job at Wake Forest.

63 comments Add your comment

Meatlake

April 18th, 2010
2:45 am

Fast Eddie

April 18th, 2010
6:43 am

How ’bout them dawgs! That’s as good as a national championship in football any day.

Thomas Eagle

April 18th, 2010
6:49 am

This was one of the most exciting DAWG sports moments I’ve seen in a long time. These girls fought for everything they could get, hunkered down and brought UGA another national championship. My hats off to all of them but especially Hannah Dyer and the reiners. This one’s for you and “beer for your horses!”

Vince Dooley

April 18th, 2010
7:21 am

dang I got excited when I saw UGA and National Championship in the same sentence but………..underwater basket weaving national championships just arn’t the same

stw

April 18th, 2010
7:46 am

Congratulations Ladies..Dawgs out front..

GT = Best Buy/Geek Squad 40k/year LOSER

April 18th, 2010
8:06 am

Vince Dooley

April 18th, 2010
7:21 am

Too bad your loser azz has never excelled in anything in life. Yet your scummy venom shines brightly from your jealous rants.

3 out of 20

April 18th, 2010
8:07 am

Yeah baby!!!! The Dawgs are champions!!! Give Damon Evans a big fat raise and bonus—-he’s the man!!!!! Michael Adams—sign him to a new lucrative, long term contract—they have it going on!!! Equestrian champions! The feeling is great!!!!

Russ, the Temporary Mascot

April 18th, 2010
8:40 am

At any moment those horses could be pulled into an electrical closet and have their a$$es painted white. That happened to me. It could happen to them.

DawgNation

April 18th, 2010
8:57 am

Good God people I can only imagine what you would be posting if they had lost. This is just as important to the participants of that sport as football is to the rest of us. It is a bright spot for UGA and I think these ladies have represented the university well. Congratulations on your accomplishments and thank you.

DuluthDawg

April 18th, 2010
9:27 am

Honestly folks, that’s fine and everything. But in the grand scheme of things who really cares? Thought so.

Delusional Dawg

April 18th, 2010
9:34 am

YEAH BABY!! That’s gonna look REAL good next to our Spring Football Scrimmage National Trophy! Notice I did NOT use the word “mythical”.

[...] Tim Tucker of the AJC reports on Georgia winning a national title — in equestrian. [...]

Navigator

April 18th, 2010
9:38 am

Congrats to the Equestrian team, this is a noble and beautiful sport between horse and rider, and I’m glad the trophy rest in our state.

GiddyAp You Dogies

April 18th, 2010
9:55 am

Fast Eddie

April 18th, 2010
6:43 am
How ’bout them dawgs! That’s as good as a national championship in football any day.

And, about as close as they’ll come to one :)

Sugar Hill Dawg

April 18th, 2010
9:56 am

Damn Good Dawgs!!! Congrats to the atheletes, the coaches, amd the horses. (I hope one of the girls had the good sense to name her horse Larry!)

Saben's Best

April 18th, 2010
10:13 am

We all love our Ga football, but these beautiful horses and women deserve the same respect and praise as the other sports. If you have never been to one of these events, you should try it. You just might see semothing you like, and there are plenty of great looking young ladies there as well.

Doug from Duluth

April 18th, 2010
10:17 am

Congratulations to all the girls, coaches and parents. While it may not capture the attention of many people like football or basketball, it does not lessen the hard work these folks put in to get to the pinnacle of the college equestrian world. I suspect most of the mocking trolls have never won a championship in anything, including their 3rd grade spelling bee.

Ride ‘em, Dawgs!

messin with sasquatch

April 18th, 2010
10:37 am

Dawgaholic

April 18th, 2010
10:40 am

When was the last time tech won a national title in anything?

[...] Tim Tucker of the AJC reports on Georgia winning a national title — in equestrian. [...]

Happy DAWG

April 18th, 2010
11:29 am

For all you “loser” types who have to get your immature comments on these blogs, I would enjoy seeing you on a horse. These 115 lb. young ladies have to control and 2,000 lb. animal, and do it with grace and determination. Something some of you would not know about.
Congratulations ladies, and GO DAWGS!

Randy McMichael

April 18th, 2010
11:44 am

Yeah Happy DAWG… I bet this makes you appreciate your father now more than ever.

Doesn’t UGA win the national title in recruiting each February?

Dawg

April 18th, 2010
11:57 am

Congrats to the ladies on their National Championship. It’s very hard to win a title on the national level and some of those “I only care about football” people may like to know that their donations have helped Georgia place third in the SEC in national titles. That’s over 30 national titles, behind only LSU and Arkansas. I know Damon Evans goal was to raise the bar on UGAs entire athletic program and this has been a difficult year to say the least. Despite recent success, gymnastics and baseball appear to be in shambles. Were on solid ground money wise, but we need to be more solid on the field. Here hoping the right decisions are made to move UGA in that direction.

.

April 18th, 2010
11:57 am

Randy McMichael = a fricking moronic goober

AltamahaDawg

April 18th, 2010
12:09 pm

I imagine thier parents, any parents for that matter, thier coaches, friends, fans, supporters of the University of Georgia, and just generally pleasant people, care. They don’t have any of those things in Duluth I suppose.

AltamahaDawg

April 18th, 2010
12:11 pm

My bad Doug, didnt mean to catch you in the crossfire. In “certain” households in Duluth I should have said.

reservoirDAWG

April 18th, 2010
12:11 pm

You negative people are losers. Why not be happy for these girls? I am sure they work hard and they and their families are proud and happy for them.

reservoirDAWG

April 18th, 2010
12:13 pm

Oh yeah, Randy McMichael is a douche.

Observer

April 18th, 2010
12:23 pm

If you really bleed red and black, you’re proud of ALL UGA student athletes, not just the guys who play on Saturdays in the fall. These ladies, and other student athletes, put forth a lot of time and effort to succeed in and out of the classroom and winning a national championship is something most people will never be a part of. Way to go ladies!

manedawgfan

April 18th, 2010
12:30 pm

GO MANE DAWGS!!! You really did a great job.!!

FranktheFalcon

April 18th, 2010
12:47 pm

LADIES,

We are proud of you and your accomplishments! Your have represented UGA and your families well! Thank you for a great year!!! Bask in the glory of all that you have done this year!!!

Richie

April 18th, 2010
12:52 pm

Hey, it all helps in the quest for the Sears Trophy at the end of the year. Congrats to the UGA cowgirls.

superDawg

April 18th, 2010
2:07 pm

gt wins a national championship every year in the pee wee herman look-a-like contest.

74Dawg

April 18th, 2010
2:24 pm

Winning a national championship in ANYTHING is a tremendous accomplishment for those who did it. Congratulations to the ladies ,their team,and coaches.

Tech G

April 18th, 2010
2:35 pm

Ga can’t come close to winning titles in any real sports, so they better celebrate this horse riding title!! Break out the champagne in Athens—the students will be partying all night long!!!!

Who Cares

April 18th, 2010
2:58 pm

Oh come-on now, who REALLY cares about Equestrian sports (except the people doing it and their families)? I have read where there are over 100 students, primarily women, who are at UGA in the Equestrian program. I guess the primary reason why UGA even has this sorry sport is to satisfy Title IV requirements. I bet it is a real money loser of a sport. THE ONLY REAL sport that really matters at UGA is football and basketball – the rest are excuses and a waste of time.

joe

April 18th, 2010
4:32 pm

“THE ONLY REAL sport that really matters at UGA is football and basketball – the rest are excuses and a waste of time.”

Spoken like someone whose school has no athletic program worth mentioning. LOL!

“Ga can’t come close to winning titles in any real sports”

You know the definition of the word irony. Tech hasn’t won a national championship in anything, in God knows how long. Tech’s athletic department is a joke. You guys can’t even afford to fire your basketball coach because the buyout is too big. So you really need to shut up.

Pago Flyer

April 18th, 2010
4:51 pm

Yea great, but what about football and baseball?

lone ranger

April 18th, 2010
5:09 pm

Congratulations to the team and everyone involved. I was out there last weekend after the spring game and saw some of these horses – I can’t imagine how hard it is to control one of these animals better than everyone else in the country, so while I’m a “ball” fan, my hat’s off to this team, and I include the riders, coaches, and the hands that manage the farm.

Poopy Pants

April 18th, 2010
7:12 pm

Seems like the girls are the only athletes at UGA that seem to win national championships nowadays. Gymnastics and Equestrian have dominated. Basketball and Football have not. The Men’s Tennis team is the only male team that has done pretty well. Baseball has been inconsistent.

I’m as big of a fan of UGA football as anyone, but we have been pwned by the Gators this past decade. Maybe we should all start supporting winners like the Equestrian team now that Mettenberger is gone

RxDawg

April 18th, 2010
8:10 pm

WTH does the AJC close comments for every article regarding dismissal of a player? With all the junk that gets spewed on this blog that’s when they feel the need to censor everyone? Not cool AJC

Stinger

April 18th, 2010
8:26 pm

Must be another girls sport. Only way UGA ever wins anything. What have you won since 1980???
What did Mett do to get kicked off? Must be a felony offense.

The Real SugarHillDawg

April 18th, 2010
8:36 pm

This was/is a STUPID pseudo sport invented to comply with that SOCIALST ruling called title 9 and I could care less.

UGA Titles

April 18th, 2010
8:48 pm

Maybe we should hire this “equestrian” coach to head the football team! Why can’t we find a coach to win in the most prestigious sport? One championship in over 110 years of football just doesn’t cut it. And that one was over 30 years ago!!!

Way to go horse dawgs! At least someone knows how to bring home championships.

UGA Titles

April 18th, 2010
8:53 pm

Also, UGA’s knew rules to win a football championship is that if you are not good enough to start once you reach campus….you better dot your i’s and cross your t’s or else we’ll find some reason to kick your butt off the team so we can recruit more high school studs. Glad this “drinking and your off the team” policy wasn’t in place when Stafford was here or he’d be kicked off the team right, Coach? After all his hugging (spooning) another male student while drunk at Talledaga Speedway had to be as bad as what Mett did! What hypocrisy Richt!!!

UGA Titles

April 18th, 2010
8:57 pm

Stinger…you don’t know UGA sports!!! We wone the baseball championship one year. Have wone tennis multiple times and made the final four once (Tech only has twice). So we win in other stuff even though our females do excel.

Correcter of Error

April 18th, 2010
9:51 pm

Hey ‘ Who Cares ‘, try a little bit of “getting the facts straight” before you post. It’s Title IX (nine) not Title IV (four).

Congrats to these Ladies and their accomplishment. The entire UGA Community is very proud!

Roommate of a UGA Equestrian Team Member

April 18th, 2010
10:12 pm

I am so proud of the UGA Equestrian team for their national championship. However, I am baffled by all of these negative comments. These girls work so hard during their workouts and practices, so all of the haters should just keep their mouths shuts. These girls are doing so much more in their lives than you are, so back off. I know this because my roommate gets up 5 times a week at 5 am to do cardio, strength training, and workouts with the horses. Then after a couple hours of that, they have class, homework, extracurricular activities, etc. These girls put so much effort into their schoolwork so that they can ride and show UGA their talent. This is a daily routine for them. My roommate comes back exhausted everyday; nevertheless, she prevails (and it paid off). It seems that all of the people who don’t appreciate this amazing achievement forget about all of the work and dedication that goes into winning something, let alone a national championship. So Mr. Who Cares, look at your index finger–I’m pretty sure there will NEVER be a national championship rock there.

BuzzTech

April 18th, 2010
10:20 pm

I heard the equestrian coach takes the horses swimming to get them motivated–that’s how they won the national title!

Buckhead Bulldog

April 19th, 2010
6:52 am

BuzzTech…..THAT was funny!