MINNEAPOLIS — Volborg bull rider Jess Lockwood gained ground on world No. 1 Jose Vitor Leme of Brazil with a third-place finish at the Professional Bull Riders Unleash the Beast Minneapolis Invitational on Saturday.

The 22-year-old Lockwood responded to being bucked off in the first round on Friday with a 2-for-2 performance on Saturday. Lockwood scored an 88.25-point ride on Tulsa Time in the second round. In the championship round, he posted the second-best score with an 89 while riding Gambini.

Lockwood also won his PBR leading fourth 15/15 Bucking Battle of the season on Friday with his eighth 90-plus point ride of the season. The Montana cowboy rode Bad Beagle to a 91.-5 point score in the final special round of the season.

All told, Lockwood collected $19,850 and 420 points in the standings and now trails Leme by 671.66 points after entering the competition 1,031.66 points behind.

Leme did not place with a 0-for-2 performance. He did gain 60 world points with a fourth-place finish in the 15/15 Bucking Battle.

Alan de Souza of Brazil won his first elite series title in just his fourth Unleash the Beast event of his career. Souza, who pocketed $33,695 and 460 points, was the only rider with a 3-for-3 performance.

Columbia Falls’ Matt Triplett placed 14th with an 85.75-point ride in the first round and earned 15 points. Triplett is 15th in the world standings.

There are two more regular-season Unleash The Beast stops as Lockwood, the 2017 PBR champion, pursues another world title. The PBR World Finals are in Las Vegas Nov. 6-10.

The second-to-last regular-season stop is Oct. 12-13 in Greensboro, North Carolina, at the Greensboro Coliseum.

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