Polo Players Edition

OCT 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.

Issue link: https://polo.epubxp.com/i/1029347

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Page 47 of 67

D efending champion Flexjet made it two in a row in the U.S. Arena Handicap Polo Championship at Aspen Valley Polo Club in Carbondale, Colorado, Aug. 9. On a perfect day for polo, Flexjet (Melissa Ganzi, Alejandro Novillo Astrada, Juan Bollini) rallied in the second half to defeat The Polo School (Aiden Meeker, Carlitos Gracida, Nic Roldan), 14-10, in front of a good crowd and worldwide USPA Polo Network audience. Fourteen-year-old Aiden Meeker of Fort Worth, Texas, playing well above his A handicap in his arena championship debut, was named Most Valuable Player. Meeker, a freshman at Culver Academy, scored two goals in the semifinals and one in the final while defending some of the sport's top players including Argentine brothers Alejandro and Nacho Novillo Astrada. "I didn't expect to be MVP," Meeker said. "It was fun to get on the horses and play. I like playing polo. It's a whole new experience going full-speed, down the field and hitting a ball and trying to make a really nice shot. I got to meet a bunch of people who were super nice." In an action-packed final, Novillo Astrada scored a game-high eight goals and finished with 19 in two games. The one-day tournament, played in 72-degree weather and under clear skies, lived up to expectations. In the final, The Polo School led 3-2 at the half behind Roldan's two goals and one by Meeker. Novillo Astrada took charge in 46 POLO P L A Y E R S E D I T I O N P O L O R E P O R T D I S P A T C H E S F R O M T H E W O R L D O F P O L O Mountain Chevrolet's Kris Kampsen digs the ball out of the corner with FlexJet's Juan Bollini on his hip in the USPA Arena Handicap semifinal. Alejandro Novillo Astrada and Michael Payne follow. FLEXJET DEFENDS USPA ARENA TITLE R O C K Y M O U N T A I N CHIARO FOTO

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