Middle School Tournament Conditions | U.S. POLO ASSN.

In response to the growing number of young players in the I/I program, the program is aiming to expand and include a new venue for its youngest members to compete in. The goal of the Middle School League is to provide a venue for younger players to gain more tournament experience, while allowing them to play against competitors of their same ability. Eligible players must be enrolled in an academic program as a 5th through 8th grade student, and will be entered as an individual. Players are responsible for bringing or leasing appropriate horses for the tournament, as the split string format will not be used.

For more information on the Middle School League, please see the tournament conditions below, or contact Emily Dewey at edewey@uspolo.org with any questions.

Middle School Tournament Conditions

1) Player must be enrolled in an academic program in which they are currently in the 5th through 8th grades. Players that meet both the eligibility requirements for the Middle School and Interscholastic Tournaments will be allowed to play in both sets of tournaments.

2) Player must be a current registered member of the USPA. A handicap is not required, but the Player needs to be ready for tournament play.

3) A registration fee of $50 per Player will be collected by the USPA before a player may register for any Middle School Tournament. Host Clubs may charge an additional entry fee for their Tournament.

4) The Middle School Tournaments shall be played under the USPA Intercollegiate/Interscholastic Tournament Conditions as outlined in B. Games/Event and C. Tournaments, with the following modifications:

a. Games will be played in a 4 chukker format. Players will have the option to play either 2 or 4 chukkers based on the number of horses they bring to play.

b. Taking into consideration the safety of the players in the Middle School Tournaments, games will not be played in the split string format for this tournament only. Players will be responsible for using their own horse(s) or leasing appropriate horses for the Tournament.

  • i. The Player is responsible for the shipping and housing of their horse(s). The Host site will provide stabling options to Players and Coaches before the Tournament.
  • ii. If the Tournament Manager and Equine Welfare Representative determine that a Player’s horse is unfit to play for the number of chukkers it has been assigned, the horse will be pulled from the game and a replacement found, if possible.

c. Shootouts for Middle School Tournament Games will take place at the 15-yard line. If the shootout moves into multiple rounds, the Host Tournament Committee may move the shootout to the 25-yard line.

d. Tournaments will be played in an “open” format. Boys and girls will be allowed on the same teams.

e. Players will be placed in a pool for coaches and the Tournament HTC to create appropriate teams, keeping in mind each Player’s ability and horse availability.

f. Work guidelines

  • i. Players will be required to follow the assigned work guidelines of the tournament as set by the Tournament HTC. These guidelines may include, but are not limited to: walking horses, lining the arena, and goal judging.

g. Voting Procedures

  • i. Best Playing Pony – The Umpires will choose the BPP. Other committee members in attendance may have a vote as well.
  • ii. Horsemanship Award – The HTC will choose the Horsemanship Award winner.

h. The following paperwork is due to the USPA ten (10) days before the tournament start date:

  • i. Registration Fee
  • ii. Player Application
  • iii. Current USPA membership

i. There will be no requirement for qualifying games to be eligible to play in the Middle School Tournaments.

j. USPA will supply trophies and awards.