Polo Players Edition

SEP 2018

Polo Players' Edition is the official publication of the U.S. Polo Association. Dedicated to the sport of polo, it features player profiles, game strategy, horse care, playing tips, polo club news and tournament results.

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P O L O R E P O R T POLO P L A Y E R S E D I T I O N 49 Figueras, Tom Barrack), 8-5. Grant Ganzi, a member of Team USPA, was named the game's MVP for the second year in a row. Ganzi had a game-high four goals including two penalty conversions. Santa Rita Polo Farm's 6-year-old grey mare, Pilar, played by Lalor in the third chukker, was Best Playing Pony. La Karina, led by Bollini in the back, was relentless on defense. Piocho Ranch had its share of scoring opportunities but could not take advantage against La Karina's stingy defense. Despite a 20-minute delay for a storm at the 5:06 mark of the third chukker, La Karina never lost its momentum. Los Amigos Red (Alex Gooding, Nacho Novillo Astrada, Stewart Armstrong, Paul Foster) won the Just For The Love Of It subsidiary game with a 12-7 victory over American Polo Horse (Alejandra de la Vega, Riley Ganzi, Pablo Dorignac, Juan Bollini). Los Amigos Red broke open a close game, taking a 4-3 lead at the end of the second chukker on Astrada's goal. Los Amigos Red never trailed after that and led by as many as five goals, 11-6, late in the fifth chukker and shut out American Polo Horse, 1-0, in the final chukker. The season opened with Piocho Ranch coming away with the Independence Cup. Piocho (Riley Ganzi, Carlitos Gracida, Nacho Figueras, Tom Barrack) defeated Aspen Valley Polo Club (Melissa Ganzi, Marc Ganzi, Pablo Dorignac, Juan Bollini) in front of a good local holiday crowd. Piocho, tied twice in the third and fifth chukkers, came up big in the sixth chukker with goals from Figueras and Barrack to clinch the 8-6 victory. Nacho Figueras was named MVP and his 10-year-old Chestnut mare, Milonga, played in the fourth chukker by Barrack, was Best Playing Pony. The game was a seesaw affair for the first five chukkers. The lead changed hands nine times. Piocho took a 6-4 lead at the end of the fourth chukker before Aspen Valley tied the game at 6- 6 on Melissa Ganzi's goal with 50 seconds left in the fifth chukker. Both teams had their share of scoring opportunities in the final chukker but it was Piocho, which took advantage with a go-ahead goal by Figueras with 3:32 left and an insurance goal by Barrack with a minute remaining. Barrack led Piocho in scoring with four goals. Piocho Ranch followed up the next week with a win in the fifth annual Craig Sakin Memorial, edging Los Amigos Red, 11-10, in a thrilling match. Piocho Ranch (Grant Ganzi, Juancito Bollini, Nacho Figueras, Tom Barrack) jumped out to a big lead before Los Amigos Red (Jonathan Gracida/ Alejandra Foster, Pablo Dorignac, Nacho Novillo Astrada, Paul Foster) cut the deficit in the sixth chukker. Nacho Figueras was MVP for the second week in a row. MVP Amateur Award went to Alejandra Foster, who also won MVP honors the previous day in the Aspen Cup. Yatay St. Regis, a 7-year-old mare from Figueras' breeding ranch in Argentina, was Best Playing Pony. The horse, owned by Barrack and played in the fifth chukker by Figueras, is out of Quattro by stud Cabernet. Figueras scored five goals including the game-winner with 2:31 left. Ganzi and Bollini had three goals. Nacho Novillo Astrada, making his tournament season debut, scored a game-high six goals. Alejandra and Paul Foster each had two goals. In one of the club's most exciting games in tournament history, Piocho Ranch was sitting pretty in the first half, controlling the game on both ends of the field. Piocho jumped out to a 3-0 lead before Los Amigos Red scored its first goal in the final minute of the chukker. Piocho, controlling the throw-ins, was unstoppable in the second chukker, scoring three consecutive goals for a 6- 1 lead. Back-to-back goals from Novillo Astrada and Paul Foster and winning the final two throw-ins kept Los Amigos Red in the game. Piocho's Grant Ganzi, Nacho Figueras, Juancito Bollini and Tom Barrack won the Craig Sakin Memorial Cup. Piocho's Tom Barrack, Nacho Figueras, Carlitos Gracida and Riley Ganzi took the Independence Cup. CHIARO FOTO CHIARO FOTO

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