Severance’s Tyler Scales electrifies local crowd, uses mentality developed from wrestling to excel in bareback riding | MyWindsorNow.com

Severance’s Tyler Scales electrifies local crowd, uses mentality developed from wrestling to excel in bareback riding

Bobby Fernandez
bfernandez@greeleytribune.com

Tyler Scales is wrestling with success.

He used to do so literally.

Nowadays, the success he wrestles with comes while clinging onto the back of a bucking bronco, rather than staring in the eyes of an unrelenting grappler.

Scales, a 31-year-old pro rodeo rider who lives in Severance, electrified friends, family and newfound well-wishers in what he considers his hometown rodeo Tuesday at Island Grove Park.

He scored an 80.5 in bareback bronc riding during the first day of the Greeley Stampede's six days of pro rodeo.

"To draw that kind of horse (Molly Brown) at pretty much your hometown rodeo — I live 15 miles away — I was excited to have her," Scales said. "I got kind of excited with the crowd at my hometown rodeo about 5 seconds through and kind of quit doing my job there at the end. But, I think (the score) will be enough to make the short round and hopefully come back on July 3rd."

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Scales has been coming to the Stampede for more than a decade but has never won the highly competitive rodeo.

He is hoping to change that this year with an eye on being back for the finals at 7 p.m. Monday. However, he doesn't plan to lose sleep worrying about whether his ride Tuesday was good enough, nor does he expect to be sweating and shaking if and when he steps back into Island Grove Arena on Monday.

Scales is cooler than the stiff breeze that periodically blew through the arena Tuesday. And, he's not likely to be rattled when the competition rises.

Growing up in Grand Junction before moving to Severance nine years ago, he's come a long way since his days wrestling for Palisade High School 13 years ago.

Scales and his family have always been big into wrestling, and he had plenty of success in high school.

But, by his own admission, when it came to high-stakes tournaments like regionals and state, Scales had the tendency to psych himself out. He let those big moments get in his head.

Not anymore.

"When I was 18, I would have just melted," Scales said. "Now, I've been down the road, and I've been in this situation a lot. So, it's just another day to me."

Scales wrestled at 112, 119 and 125 pounds during four years of varsity wrestling.

He experienced his share of bumps and bruises in the physical sport but nothing compared to what he must endure now as a bareback rider.

He wears a brace on his right arm, which he also heavily wraps, after having elbow surgery recently. He also has worked through a torn labrum in his hip, a broken leg, two broken arms, a broken shoulder, a broken collarbone four times and he's been kicked in the head by a horse.

He credits his triumphs and tribulations on the wrestling mat more than a decade ago for ultimately teaching him how mentally strong he needed to be to succeed on the rodeo circuit.

Whether he gets bucked off or records a rock-solid score like he did Tuesday, Scales doesn't hesitate to dust himself off, clear his head and trek over to the next town.

When his name and hometown was announced over the public address system before his ride, he received arguably the biggest ovation of the night — from the numerous family and friends he knew were in the stands, as well as the legion of supporters he just acquired, as he was one of only two Weld riders competing Tuesday.

"I was smiling there," he said of the big ovation. "It dang sure gives you a good feeling."

He admitted he felt similar butterflies as he does with most other rodeos but nothing out of the ordinary.

"Every rodeo you get on, if you don't have the butterflies, I don't think you should be doing it," he said. "It's excitement. And, my family, my friends, my neighbors all texted me, wanting to know when I was on. … But, you still have to do your job."

Greeley Stampede Pro Rodeo

Day 1 results

Bareback bronc riding — Clayton Biglow, Clements, Calif., 81; Tyler Scales, Severance, 80.5; Jordan Pelton, Halliday, N.D., 79; Steer wrestling — Royce Johnson, Checotah, Okla., 5.1; Rhett Kennedy, Chowcilla, Calif., 5.2; Blair Jones, Colby, Kan., 9.6; Team roping — Erich Rogers, Round Rock, Ariz., & Cory Petska, Marana, Ariz., 4.9; Jake Orman, Prairie, Miss., & Tyler Domingue, De Kalb, Texas, 5.5; Doyle Hoskins, Chualar, Calif., & Matt Costa, Turlock, Calif., 7.2; Saddle bronc riding — Brody Cress, Hillsdale, Wyo., 85; Rusty Wright, Milford, Utah., 81.5; Taos Muncy, Corona, N.M., 80.5; Tie-down roping — Marcos Costa, Childress, Texas, 9.3; Jake Pratt, Ellensburg, Wash., 9.6; Clay McCuistion, Sanger, Texas, 10.3; Barrel racing — Ericka Nelson, Century, Fla., 17.21; Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, Victoria, Texas, 17.25; Lake Mehalic, Oro Valley, Ariz., 17.67; Bull riding — Brody Yeary, Brock, Texas, 85.5.

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