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Columbia Falls cowboy Matt Triplett bucks to Professional Bull Riders win

April 3, 2017 GMT

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — A Montana cowboy will walk into Rimrock Auto Arena at MetraPark fresh off a win when the Professional Bull Riders return Friday.

Columbia Falls’ Matt Triplett bucked to his first win since 2015 Sunday in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, at the First Bank Bankcard Invitational. It was the Montana native’s first Built Ford Tough Series event title since he was victorious in Anaheim, California, two years ago.

With the victory, Triplett jumped from 18th to ninth in the world standings. Triplett has won $76,468.15 this season.

“I feel really good right now,” a beaming Triplett told PBR media officials. “I wasn’t healthy all of last year recovering from elbow and shoulder surgery but I finally feel good. My dad really helped me get back in a good mindset, he told me that I’m very talented and I can ride any bull, I just have to stay out of my head. I did that this weekend and it feels great.”

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Triplett clinched his victory with a 88.75-point ride aboard Little Red Jacket in the championship round. He earned 625 points in the world standings and $34,961. Overall, he was 3-for-4.

Volborg’s Jess Lockwood returned from a groin injury, but did not cover a bull. He had missed the previous five weeks. Lockwood will enter the Billings event second in the world standings to Eduardo Aparecido, who also did not place in Sioux Falls. Lockwood had earned $171,873.33 this year, while Aparecido has netted $263,713.33.

Billings native Mike Lee tied for 14th place with one ride of 84.75 points to earn 17.5 points. Cody Nance, the 2009 PBR rookie of the year, finished in second place, going 3-for-4 — including two rides on championship Sunday. Nance earned 350 world standings points and $17,936.

The PBR’s next BFTS stop is at the Metra Friday, Saturday and Sunday for the Stanley Performance in Action Invitational. Billings is the longest running stop on the BFTS. The 19-year-old Lockwood enters as the defending champion, having pocketed $40,000 last year at Metra.