NASHVILLE – The Austin Gamblers remained red-hot Sunday afternoon in Nashville, overtaking the No. 1 position in the early PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Team Series standings compliments of their second consecutive event win in the newly formed league. As the only team to go a perfect 3-0 in game play inside Bridgestone Arena, the Austin outfit was crowned the inaugural PBR Stampede Days event winners. The Gamblers have now won six games in a row.
Fresh off their event win last weekend in Anaheim, California, the Gamblers began the Music City event on Friday night with their fourth-consecutive game win, defeating the Arizona Ridge Riders by one ride score, 175.25-85.25.
On Saturday, the Gamblers then squared off against the Carolina Cowboys, who also entered the showdown having won on Friday night. The Gamblers again beat their opponent by one bull, winning their fifth-straight game in defeating the Cowboys 168.5-82.5.
In a Sunday afternoon showdown of titans, the then No. 2 Austin Gamblers took on the top-ranked Missouri Thunder for their final game, a matchup between the Top 2 teams in the league. With the Gamblers down a bull in the bottom of the fifth, two-time PBR World Champion Jose Vitor Leme recorded another dramatic walk off-ride, and the Gamblers defeated the Thunder by a mere 1.75 points, 173.75-172, clinching the event win.
With both the Gamblers and Thunder reaching the Bonus Round with a 7-3 season record, the eight-rider showdown round would determine which team would leave Nashville atop the PBR Team Series standings.
Leme was tasked with a familiar opponent in I’m Legit Too (Hale Cattle Co.) for Austin, while Leandro Machado was matched up with Yellowknife (Blake Sharp/Michael Floyd) for the Thunder.
As the first rider out, Leme set the tone early for the Bonus Round, reaching the requisite 8 for an explosive 88.75 points. Machado, unable to answer the score, was bucked off in a quick 3.72 seconds.
Leme’s score was never topped, and the Gamblers tied for the Bonus Round win to add 7.5 points to their season total. The 8-second effort also allowed Leme to extend his lead atop the MVP Race. He now leads No. 2 Daylon Swearingen by 269.75 points.
The Gamblers’ flawless effort in Nashville allowed them to leave Bridgestone Arena as the No. 1 team in the league, holding a 7-3 overall record and having amassed 25.5 Bonus Round points.
The host Nashville Stampede concluded their inaugural homestand seventh, going 1-2 in game play, and earning 3 bonus points.
On Saturday, the Stampede earned their first hometown victory against the Ariat Texas Rattlers following a dramatic walk-off ride score from Silvano Alves but fell to the Carolina Cowboys and Kansas City Outlaws to start and end the weekend.
The Stampede will return to road competition as the No. 6-ranked team in the league with a 3-7 overall record and 28 total bonus points.
The PBR Team Series will next travel to the Moody Center in Austin, Texas, for the third team-hosted homestand as the Austin Gamblers, riding their six-game winning stream, welcome the league for PBR Gambler Days. The event will be on Friday, August 26 at 7:45 p.m. CT, Saturday, August 27 at 6:45 p.m. CT and Sunday, August 28 at 12:15 p.m. CT.
The game matchups for the opening night of competition in Austin on August 26 are:
Carolina Cowboys @ Kansas City Outlaws
Oklahoma Freedom @ Ariat Texas Rattlers
Missouri Thunder @ Arizona Ridge Riders
Nashville Stampede @ Austin Gamblers
PBR RidePass on Pluto TV will offer replays of all the PBR Team Series action from Nashville. Check https://pluto.tv/en/live-tv/pbr-ridepass for the latest programming schedule.
Kansas City Outlaws: 162.75
Nashville Stampede: 85
Backed by a crucial re-ride declining decision by Head Coach J.W. Hart in the fifth frame, the Kansas City Outlaws beat the host Nashville Stampede by one ride score 162.75-85 on the final day of PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Stampede Days.
While both Rafael Henrique dos Santos (Sebastianopolis, Brazil) and Ryan Dirteater (Hulbert, Oklahoma) struck out for the Outlaws and Stampede, respectively, in the first, the game intensity ramped up in the second.
On the spurs of an Outlaw buckoff suffered by Koltin Hevalow (Smithville, Missouri), Thiago Salgado (Navirai, Brazil) converted for the Stampede.
Riding Light’s Out (Jane Clark/Gene Owen) for 85 points, Salgado celebrated his team’s early lead by backflipping off the shark cage in center arena.
The Outlaws, however, would not be silenced long. In the top of the third, Bob Mitchell (Steelville, Missouri) put the Kansas City team within 1 point of the lead, covering Casper (Crescent City Bucking Bulls/Lari Crane/Gene Owen) for 84 points.
With the Stampede’s Lucas Fideles (Barnstable, Massachusetts) bested in the bottom of the third, and neither team finding success in the fourth, the game came down to crucial round five matchups.
While first-round draft pick Dalton Kasel (Muleshoe, Texas) was in the closing position for the Outlaws, three-time PBR World Champion Silvano Alves (Pilar do Sul, Brazil) was last out for the Stampede.
Kasel erupted from the chutes atop Spice (Flying C/Flying P Bucking Bulls) and after a wild out, was initially ruled to have a logged a qualified score as re-ride flags flew. After careful scrutiny from league officials, Kasel was indeed awarded a score of 78.75 points, but the team still had to determine whether they would accept a re-ride.
In a business decision, Coach Hart kept the score, giving his team a 77.75-point lead.
Alves, who was the Stampede’s Saturday night hero, delivering a walk-off score to lead them to victory against the Ariat Texas Rattlers, next readied atop the chutes to take on Tested’s Viper (Hookin’ W/LeFlore Bucking Bulls). Unable to replicate his clutch performance from the evening prior, Alves was brought down in 4.83 seconds.
Stampede Head Coach Justin McBride challenged the call; however, the buckoff stood, and the Kansas City Outlaws won 162.75-85.
Via the win, the Kansas City Outlaws (4-6) improved to 2-1 at PBR Stampede Days, while the host Nashville Stampede (3-7) slipped to 1-2.
Photo courtesy of Andy Watson/Bull Stock Media