Ice Breaker: Aguilera and Torres Notch Biggest Career Wins Yet at San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo

One-time partnership of Lightning Aguilera and Jonathan Torres resulted in a $21,500 jump in the PRCA world standings with a San Antonio win.

Wenceslao “Lightning” Aguilera and Jonathan Torres have both been on the brink of greatness in ProRodeo competition, making their win Saturday Feb. 26 at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo even sweeter than just the $21,500-jump in the PRCA world standings.

That jump skyrocketed both men to the top of the PRCA’s leaderboard, with Aguilera nabbing second place in the heading standings with $28,364.55 in early March and Torres taking over the heeling lead with $39,820.10. Aguilera is $5,091.43 behind Kaleb Driggers in first place, while Torres has a $6,364.12 lead over Junior Nogueira.

Aguilera and Torres won the first two rounds of their set in San Antonio with a 5.3 and 4.5, worth $2,500 per round each. They were second with a 4.8-second run in the Semifinals worth $4,000 each, and they won the final round at first out with a 4.2 for another $12,500 to make them the rodeo’s champs.

“It was just a blessing really,” Aguilera, 28, said. “I tried to get good goes and give my partner a chance, and it just worked out.”

Both from South Florida, Aguilera and Torres have known one another their whole lives but rarely roped together in competition. 

“It’s like a dream come true really,” Torres, 29, said. “It feels good to see some results. It’s not like weight off your shoulders forever, but it feels like we’re doing the right stuff. My brother and I have been practicing every day and it’s paying off.”

Torres’s brother and regular partner Josh was watching on The Cowboy Channel app from their rig in Tucson for the short round at the La Fiesta de los Vaqueros Rodeo—where Jonathan flew to rope the next morning. His luck continued, and the brothers picked up another $2,918 in Tucson by placing in each round and $4,553 each for winning second in the average with a time of 20.3 seconds on three head.

“It sucks I didn’t get to win San Antone with my brother, but it’s definitely a good roll for the team,” Torres said. “That’s how we take it—to keep the ball rolling and keep the momentum. He’s having a kid next week, so he’ll be flying back and forth to California, but I’m going to take care of stuff. It feels good, and we’re trying to keep some good horses and practice all the time.” 

After numerous top 40 finishes that left them just short of their first Finals qualification, the Torres brothers credit the reigning world champ Kaleb Driggers with helping them elevate their game in 2022.

“Driggers came over to the house when we were supposed to be looking at some steers, and he was early so we were killing time. He said, ‘Do you trust me? I said ‘Definitely.’ He said, ‘Josh slow down.’ So Josh slowed down, and it helped my horses. We’re more fundamentally correct. Driggers said we both needed to slow down, and we’d be faster. Our horses felt better, and it was easier to catch more steers fast. Our horses got more honest and not thinking about the play before it happened. That advice helped a lot.” 

Notably, on the horse front, Torres won San Antonio on a just 6-year-old gelding named Coronas Hickory Gun by PG Gamma Ray out of the Mr Freckles Olena mare Ima Hickory Lena. It’s the same horse he won the American Rope Horse Futurity Association’s 4-Year-Old World Championship aboard two years ago.   

“We like the Playguns,” Torres said. “My brother has a Playgun head horse too. They work for us. It feels good for us—to keep the ball rolling riding horses we’re confident in.”

Aguilera, who is roping with Coleby Payne in the regular season, was on a gray gelding the just bought from Jordan Weaver, named Jess A Moose, that will surely change his game. The 11-year-old horse is straight run, which should help with Aguilera’s ability to run to the cow. 

“My cousin was staying with Jordan, and he was telling him about a horse I needed to try,” Aguilera said. “I got him bought and started riding him and he’s been awesome. I reached a little bit on maybe two of the steers at San Antonio, but for the most part I ran to them. He scores great, and he’s really fast and keeps his feet moving.” TRJ

FULL RESULTS: 

Bracket 1: First round: 1. Clay Smith/Jade Corkill, 4.7 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Britt Smith/Jake Smith, 5.6, $2,000; 3. Erich Rogers/Paden Bray, 6.2, $1,500; 4. Cory Kidd V/Lane Mitchell, 10.0, $1,000. Second round: 1. Reno Stoebner/Joseph Harrison, 4.3 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Tyler Wade/Trey Yates, 4.8, $2,000; 3. (tie) Clay Smith/Jade Corkill and Marcus Theriot/Shay Carroll, 4.9, $1,250 each. Third round: 1. (tie) Reno Stoebner/Joseph Harrison and Clay Smith/Jade Corkill, 4.4 seconds, $2,250 each; 3. Clay Ullery/Matt Zancanella, 4.4, $1,500; 4. Cory Kidd/Lane Mitchell, 5.1, $1,000. Qualifiers: 1. Clay Smith/Jade Corkill, $6,000 each; 2. Reno Stoebner/Joseph Harrison, $4,750; 3. Tyler Wade/Trey Yates, $2,000; 4. Cory Kidd/Lane Mitchell, $2,000.

Bracket 2: First round: 1. Quinn Kesler/Caleb Hendrix, 5.6 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Curry Kirchner/Austin Rogers, 5.7, $2,000; 3. Brenten Hall/Chase Tryan, 6.4, $1,500; 4. Chad Master/Cory Petska, 10.2, $1,000. Second round: 1. Rhett Anderson/Max Kuttler, 4.9 seconds, $2,500; 2. Chad Masters/Cory Petska, 5.1, $2,000; 3. Pedro Eggurola/J.C. Flake, 6.0, $1,500; 4. Cooper White/Tucker White, 10.6, $1,000. Third round: 1. Chad Masters/Cory Petska, 4.6 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Rhett Anderson/Max Kuttler, 5.8, $2,000; 3. Curry Kirchner/Austin Rogers, 9.7, $1,500; 4. (tie) Tyler Waters/Tyler McKnight and Brenten Hall/Chase Tryan, 10.0, $500 each. Qualifiers: 1. Chad Masters/Cory Petska, $5,500; 2. Rhett Anderson/Max Kuttler, $4,500; 3. Curry Kirchner/Austin Rogers, $3,500; 4. Quinn Kesler/Caleb Hendrix, $2,500.

Bracket 3: First round: 1. Lightning Aguilera/Jonathan Torres, 5.3, $2,500 each; 2. Brady Tryan/Cole Curry, 7.6, $2,000; 3. Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp, 9.5, $1,500; 4. Aaron Tsinigine/Kyle Lockett, 10.8, $1,000. Second round: 1. Lightning Aguilera/Jonathan Torres, 4.5 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Andrew Ward/Buddy Hawkins, 4.7, $2,000; 3. (tie) Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp and Justin Pruitt/Adam Plyler, 4.9, $1,250 each. Third round: 1. Luke Brown/Hunter Koch, 3.9 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Hayes Smith/Cullen Teller, 4.2, $2,000; 3. Derrick Begay/Levi Lord, 4.6, $1,500; 4. Aaron Tsinigine/Kyle Lockett, 5.0, $1,000. Qualifiers: 1. Lightning Aguilera/Jonathan Torres, $5,000 each; 2. Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp, $2,750; 3. Luke Brown/Hunter Koch, $2,500; 4. Hayes Smith/Cullen Teller, $2,000.

Bracket 4: First round: 1. Riley Minor/Brady Minor, 5.1 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Tanner Tomlinson/Patrick Smith, 5.3, $2,000; 3. (tie) Jake Orman/Bryce Crites and Dustin Egusquiza/Travis Graves, 5.9, $1,250 each. Second round: 1. Dustin Egusquiza/Travis Graves, 4.9 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Nick Sartain/Regan Ward, 5.0, $2,000; 3. Tannner Tomlinson/Patrick Smith, 5.3, $1,500; 4. Jason Stewart/Jason Duby, 6.6, $1,000. Third round: 1. Nelson Wyatt/Tyler Worley, 4.3 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Jake Orman/Bryce Crites, 4.8, $2,000; 3. Nick Sartain/Regan Ward, 5.1, $1,500; 4. Riley Minor/Brady Minor, 5.2, $1,000. Qualifiers: 1. Dustin Egusquiza/Travis Graves, $3,750 each; 2. Riley Minor/Brady Minor, $3,500; 3. Nick Sartain/Reagan Ward, $3,500; 4. Tanner Tomlinson/Patrick Smith, $3,500.

Bracket 5: First round: 1. Coleman Proctor/Logan Medlin, 4.9 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Jake Clay/Billie Jack Saebens, 5.8, $2,000; 3. Garrett Tonozzi/T.J. Watts, 6.5, $1,500; 4. Levi Simpson/Ryan Motes, 6.6, $1,000. Second round: 1. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Noguiera, 4.3, $2,500 each; 2. Tate Kirchenschlager/Cole Davison, 6.1, $2,000; 3. Levi Simpson/Ryan Motes, 7.4, $1,500; 4. Coleman Proctor/Logan Medlin, 9.3, $1,000. Third round: 1. Coleman Proctor/Logan Medlin, 4.4 seconds, $2,500 each; 2. Tate Kirchenschlager/Cole Davison, 4.9, $2,000; 3. Garrett Tonozzi/T.J. Watts, 5.6, $1,500; 4. Jake Clay/Billie Jack Saebens, 5.9, $1,000. Qualifiers: 1. Coleman Proctor/Logan Meglin, $6,000 each; 2. Tate Kirchenschlager/Cole Davison, $4,000; 3. Garrett Tonozzi/T.J. Watts, $3,000; Jake Clay/Billie Jack Saebens, $3,000.

Semifinal 1: 1. Coleman Proctor/Logan Medlin, 3.9 seconds, $5,000 each; 2. Lightning Aguilera/Jonathan Torres, 4.8, $4,000; 3. Quinn Kesler, 5.2, $3,000; 4. Luke Brown/Hunter Koch, 5.3, $2,000. Final qualifiers: 1. Coleman Proctor/Logan Medlin, $11,000 each; 2. Lightning Aguilera/Jonathan Torres, $9,000; 3. Clay Smith/Jade Corkill, $6,000; 4. Quinn Kesler/Caleb Hendrix, $5,500; 5. Luke Brown/Hunter Koch, $4,500.

Semifinal 2: 1. Chad Masters/Cory Petska, 4.4, $5,000 each; 2. (tie) Cory Kidd/Lane Mitchell and Dustin Egusquiza/Travis Graves, 4.9, $3,500 each; 4. Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp, 5.3, $2,000. Final qualifiers: 1. Chad Masters/Cory Petska, $10,500 each; 2. Dustin Egusquiza/Travis Graves, $7,250; 3. Cory Kidd/Lane Mitchell, $5,500; 4. Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp, $4,750; 5. Reno Stoebner/Joseph Harrison, $4,750.

Wildcard: 1. (tie) Rhett Anderson/Max Kuttler and Tate Kirchenschlager/Cole Davison, 4.2 seconds, $4,500 each; 3. Garrett Tonozzi/T.J. Watts, 13.8, $3,000; 4. Hayes Smith/Cullen Teller, 14.3, $2,000.

Finals: 1. (tie) Lightning Aguilera/Jonathan Torres and Reno Stoebner/Joseph Harrison, 4.2 seconds, $12,500 each; 3. Coleman Proctor/Logan Medlin, 9.1, $5,000; 4. Chad Masters/Cory Petska, 9.3, $3,000.

Champions: Lightning Aguilera/Jonathan Torres, $21,500 each.

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