KIG takes USPA National Twenty Goal Championship, 12-8
By Alex Webbe
With area rainfall dousing the area the previous day, an
enthusiastic crowd lined the sidelines at the Grand Champions Polo Club
Saturday afternoon in Wellington for the finals of the USPA National Twenty
After a tight first half, KIG rallied to score a
convincing 12-8 win over an out-gunned Port Mayaca foursome to capture the 2011
â€œIt was just great teamwork,â€ said KIGâ€™s Tommy
Biddle. â€œHector (Galindo) was hot today,
and we just kept feeding the ball to him,â€ he added. Galindo led all scoring with six goals.
Port Mayaca received one goal by handicap and quickly ran
the score up to 2-0 with J. J. Celis carrying the ball through the goal posts
for the score. Galindo scored KIGâ€™s
first goal followed by a pair from Biddle (one from the field and one by
penalty shot) for an early 3-2 lead.
Defense took over in the second chukker with long runs
being spirited away from the goals by their respective defenders, and at the
end of the period KIG remained ahead, 3-2.
Galindo took control early in the third, scoring twice
from the field before Port Mayacaâ€™s Stevie Orthwein scored a goal. At the end of the first half, KIG held a 5-3
Jeff Blake scored his first goal of the day to open the
fourth chukker, but Port Mayacaâ€™s Luis Escobar cut the lead back down to a pair
of goals, 6-4. Blake added two more
goals for KIG with Orthwein adding another Port Mayaca goal. With two chukkers left to play, KIG continued
to lead, 8-5.
Port Mayaca charged back into the game in the fifth
chukker, picking up goals from Misha Rodzianko and Orthwein, cutting the KIG
lead to a single goal, 8-7. A penalty
conversion from Biddle and a goal from the field from Galindo closed out the period
with a goal, giving KIG a 10-7 edge with seven minutes left to play.
Galindo made it 11-7 with his fifth goal of the
afternoon. Celis added a goal for Port
Mayaca, 11-8, but that would be as close as they would come. Galindo closed out the scoring with his sixth
goal for the 12-8 victory.
Galindo was named MVP, leading all scorers with six
goals. His 10-year-old Chestnut mare, Cat, was named Best Playing Pony. Teammates Biddle and Blake added three goals
apiece in the win.
Orthwein led the Port Mayaca attack with three
goals. Celis scored twice and Rodzianko
and Escobar added single goals. Port
Mayaca received one goal by handicap.
â€œIt was wonderful,â€ said KIG team captain Bash Kazi,
following the trophy presentation. â€œThis
was a wonderful team and a great tournament,â€ he added.