It was a night to crow for a couple of area cowboys at the Missoula Stampede rodeo.

Buck Lunak of Philipsburg held on to win a share of his first bareback bronc title in Missoula after finishing second twice. He and four-time world champion Bobby Mote of Texas posted a score of 82 on Friday that held up through Saturday's final go round.

Corvallis native Josh Reynolds, who won a saddle bronc title in Circle this past week and scored 79 on Friday in the Yellowstone River Roundup in Billings, secured third place Saturday in front of an electric Zootown crowd with his score of 83.

"It was a younger horse so I didn't know him," Reynolds said of a critter named Carter Mountain. "But I'd say he's pretty good."

At 40 years of age, Reynolds continues to ride better than cowboys that are 20 years his junior. And even though he moved from Corvallis to Ekalaka eight years ago, he still considers the Stampede a "hometown rodeo."

 "A lot of friends and family come up so it's good to be here," he offered.

"I'm not riding like I was when I was 20, but I'm still winning money and it's been going really good. Winning helps you build momentum. It's just a mental mindset. You do good, you feel good about your ride, and it carries on over."

The only cowboy to score better on a saddle bronc Saturday was Texan Isaac Diaz. Ranked No. 8 in the world by the Pro Rodeo Cowboys Association, Diaz secured a share of first with Nebraskan Bryce Miller by scoring 84 aboard Out West.

"I didn't know that horse, but I talked to Jesse Wright a couple days ago and he said it was a nice one," said the four-time NFR qualifier. "They did good on him here earlier so I knew I had a good chance coming. That's all you can ask for."

Diaz was impressed by the Stampede in his first visit to Missoula.

"All these Montana rodeos are awesome the way the arenas are on the (race) track and big grandstands and everything,"  he offered. "They're always packed with people. People are real supportive of rodeo around here and it's pretty cool."


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The loudest round of applause by far on Saturday was directed toward Missoula's Dustin Jenkins, who is making a comeback of sorts in bull riding. The former Montana Grizzly standout, who won a college world title, made the best of a difficult situation on Montana Canvas but failed to reach the bell.

Texan Reid Barker took first in the event after scoring 86 aboard Grandpa Joe on Friday. Tying for second at 84 were Parker Breding of Edgar, Aaron Pass of Dallas and Riker Carter of Stone, Idaho.   

There wasn't much movement among the leaders in six of seven events Saturday.

Aside from the sparkling effort of Diaz, former world champion Mary Walker was the only other competitor to flirt with first as she earned runner-up honors in barrel racing with a time of 17.44 seconds. That event was won by Texan Sidney Forrest with her Thursday time of 17.43. 

Brian Bain of Oregon posted a fourth-place score of 80 in bareback bronc riding Saturday. In team roping, Californians Spencer Mitchell and Hank Hollenbeck moved into fifth with a time of 4.8 seconds.

The team roping title went to Chad Masters of Tennessee and Travis Graves of Oklahoma with a time of 4.2 on Thursday. Dirk Tavenner of Idaho earned the first-place check in steer wrestling with a time of 3.6 and Cody Ohl of Texas won the tie down roping title with his Friday time of 8.1.

The total purse for the Stampede was $35,000. Barker walked away with the largest payoff at $2,594.40.