West Hills College Coalinga rodeo student Makayla Farkas wins in "breakaway Roping" at College National Finals Rodeo in Wyoming

By The Leader Staff
Makayla Farkas with Coach Justin Strickland
Makayla Farkas with Coach Justin Strickland
Photo Contributed

West Hills College Coalinga is praising one of its students, Makayla Farkas, a sophomore kinesiology major who emerged triumphant at the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyoming, held June 11-17 when she won the demanding breakaway roping event.

Farkas, who hails from Leona Valley, California, showcased her talent and determination securing the national championship with a remarkable 10.9 seconds on four runs. This well-deserved victory marked the first upset of the night, solidifying Farkas’ place among the top competitors in the rodeo arena.

For her efforts, the talented rodeo star has been named the prestigious 2022-2023 West Hills College Coalinga Woman’s Student-Athlete of the Year, an accolade recognizing her outstanding performance in the arena and the classroom.

Farkas’ consistent dedication and exceptional academic performance have earned her numerous accolades, including a place on the Honor Roll for the fall semester.

“We are immensely proud of Makayla Farkas and her exceptional accomplishments,” said Joe Hash, West Hills College Coalinga Athletics Director. “As a kinesiology major, Farkas has proven herself a student-athlete who excels in her sport and academic pursuits. Her commitment to achieving excellence in both arenas inspires her peers and showcases the values and principles upheld by West Hills College Coalinga.”

Her coach, Justin Strickland, expressed his admiration, saying, “Makayla Farkas has consistently demonstrated incredible talent and dedication throughout her rodeo career at West Hills College Coalinga,” he said. “Her ability to balance her athletic pursuits and academic responsibilities with grace and determination is remarkable.”

West Hills Coalinga’s president Carla Tweed said Farkas has exceptional accomplishments inside and outside the classroom. “Makayla is a shining example of what it means to be a student-athlete,” she said.

“We are incredibly proud to have her represent West Hills College Coalinga,” she added.

Farkas’ achievements extend beyond her recent win. She has earned a place in the top-15 of the Western Region of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association (NIRA) in Goat Tying and Breakaway. Her consistent success in these disciplines further solidifies her status as a rising star in rodeo. 

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