September 18, 2019
Sept. 18, 2019—Cypress Ranch High School senior Samantha Reynoso is gaining national attention for her latest accomplishments as an award-winning equestrian rider.
Reynoso started riding horses when she was 8 years old and has been collecting accolades ever since. She finished the 2018 riding season as the Zone 7 champion of the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA), which consists of riders from Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Missouri, Arkansas and Kansas. This past summer, Reynoso competed in the USHJA Combined Zone 7 and Zone 8 Championship in Santa Fe, N.M., where she earned a team gold medal as well as an individual bronze medal. Reynoso was the only jumper to receive two medals in her division.
Her performance at the USHJA Combined Championship qualified Reynoso to compete in the USHJA National Finals being held Nov. 11-17 in Las Vegas, Nev., and attend one of USHJA’s Gold Star Clinics, which is exclusively for USHJA gold star emerging jumpers.
During the first day of school, Aug. 26, Reynoso learned that she is one of 16 riders from across the country to be selected for USHJA’s Emerging Athlete Program, a program for professional and non-professional riders under the age of 25. Selection for the program includes not only the rider’s talent, but their knowledge of all phases of horsemanship.
“It’s been a whirlwind the last few years,” Reynoso said. “It’s so nice to have success in such a difficult sport. A lot of people don’t understand that equestrian is more than just riding a horse. It’s a mental and physical sport that requires tons of practice and proper technique.”
Reynoso credits her parents for her recent success.
“My parents are the most supportive parents in the world,” Reynoso said. “They’ve been so willing to invest in me and this sport to make sure I’m successful. I can’t thank them enough.”
Reynoso trains three to four hours six days a week, all while taking advanced level courses and retaining a 4.0 GPA. Reynoso kick starts her training each say by having off-campus physical education (PE).
“The level of commitment demonstrated by CFISD students participating in off-campus PE continues to produce impressive results in a variety of areas,” said Loretta Bourn, coordinator of elementary music and PE. “These athletes and their families make great sacrifices to compete successfully. Samantha shines as an example of training and dedication culminating in noteworthy achievement.”
As she enters her senior year, Reynoso hopes to attend Texas A&M University or Baylor University to continue her equestrian career. If not selected for a college-level team, Reynoso would still like to continue riding as a student trainer.