Page 13: Young Poplarville rodeo star

Chase Graves
Chase Graves

POPLARVILLE, MS (WLOX) - A Pearl River County teenager is making a name for himself on the national rodeo circuit. Chase Graves is a rising star.

He excels in a rodeo event called team roping. Along with his partner Marcus Theriot,  the two work together to rope a steer.

At only 14-years-old Graves has won events all over the country.

His dad Frank, a former rodeo champ himself looks on with pride.

He says he's excited to have passed the thrill of rodeo competition to his son.

"This is our life. This is what we do. It's an unbelievable feeling to me to watch him come up and go where I've been."

In this event it's all about teamwork and time.

Chase is what's called the heeler.

"You have a header, who ropes the head. The heeler comes in and ropes the feet. The fastest time wins" said Graves.

And win he does. This Pearl River County rodeo cowboy just turned 14 and has beaten competitors his own age, as well as, adult professionals.

When Chase was 13 he won a title up in Tunica. He won a brand new Dodge Ram pick up truck. Of course he's too young to drive, but it's quite a prize.

His next stop is Gallup, New Mexico where he'll compete in the National Junior High Rodeo Finals.

This soft spoken young athlete is brimming with confidence. When asked about his goal at the event in New Mexico he replied, "To win first place."

Like any sport the recipe for victory is hard work and commitment. "They rope everyday. We ride everyday. It's hours and hours of dedication to get where he's going" said Frank Graves.

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