The members of the 16 teams entered in the 2015 Ranch Rodeo sat silently atop their horses on Saturday night.
Then, as the final note of The Star-Spangled Banner rang from the speakers at the Montezuma County Fairgrounds, the cowboys and cowgirls released shouts of excitement.
The first-place prize of $3,000 had been announced, and each team had a shot to prove itself superior in events that tested skills like roping, branding, penning and loading.
After winning the event in 2014, the Cow House Auction team from Kirtland, N.M., had the challenge of repeating as rodeo champions.
And team members Shane Hatch, Wade Hatch, Phil Wiseman, Shawn Washburn and Rusty Herrera followed up last year's success with an even more impressive performance.
Cow House completed the rodeo in 3 minutes, 11 seconds.
The Avengers finished second at 3:52, and the Groundhog Bunch claimed third with a 4:11 finish.
Cow House takes home its second consecutive Ranch Rodeo title, and the Josh Karsten Memorial Trophy.
Although finishing second, the Avengers came together to win the Wild Cow Milking competition.
Other winners on the evening included Sheldona Zwicker, whose Bay Mare was named Top Horse; Clint Wood, who was named Top Youth; and Jason Blackner, who was named Top Hand and awarded a handmade pair of stirrups, crafted by Steve Williams.