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Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club

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18

Regional President's Cup

Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club

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Sat

Sep

18

Regional President's Cup

Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club

7:00 PM UTC

Navona/JC Polo

Rancho Polo/Chogan

Sat

Sep

18

Regional President's Cup

Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club

7:00 PM UTC

Rancho Polo/Chogan

BenSoleimani.com/BFBST Law

Sat

Sep

18

Regional President's Cup

Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club

7:00 PM UTC

BenSoleimani.com/BFBST Law

Navona/JC Polo

Sun

Sep

19

BUTLER INTERNATIONAL CUP

Las Brisas Polo Club

3:00 PM UTC

G2 (USA)

Flying Changes (Germany)

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NYTS CHAMPIONSHIP SEMIFINALS

Sep 03, 2016 2:30 AM

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Nico Escobar Marked by Tommy Huber. Photo: Elizabeth Hedley
Nico Escobar marked by Tommy Huber. Photo: Elizabeth Hedley

A great crowd lined Winthrop field at Myopia Polo Club in Hamilton, Massachusetts for the first semifinal game of the National Youth Tournament Series (NYTS). Zone 3 (Florida Circuit) coached by Tom Goodspeed faced off against defending champions Zone 4 (Eastern/Northeastern Circuit) coached by Team USPA member Nick Snow. Benji Daniels began the scoring with a goal from the field for Zone 3. JP Vasquez answered with a goal to put Zone 4 on the board. The remainder of the chukker was decided on fouls. A penalty 4 conversion from Nico Escobar, followed by two penalty 2 conversions from Zone 4’s Tommy Huber, left the score 3-2 in favor of Zone 4 at the end of the first chukker. Nico Escobar and Huber continued to showcase consistent penalty shooting in the second chukker. Nico Escobar converted two, Huber one. A final goal from Benji Daniels (his second of the game) put Zone 3 in the lead by one at the half.

Winning team
NYTS Championship Finalists Zone 3: Benji Daniels, Justin Daniels, Nico Escobar and Matias Gonzalez. Photo: Elizabeth Hedley

Zone 3 continued to build off their third chukker lead with two consecutive field goals by Matias Gonzalez. George Hempt converted a penalty 3, and Zone 4 trailed by two at the end of the third chukker. In the first two minutes of play in the final chukker, Benji Daniels' horse slipped and went down—Benji Daniels walked off the field, but required a substitute. Lucas Escobar, younger brother of Nico Escobar, was chosen to fill in. Play resumed with a quick goal from Nico Escobar bringing the score 8-5. A beautiful penalty 4 conversion by Hempt put a final goal on the board for Zone 4, as the 30 second horn blew to end the game, but it was too late- Zone 3 had secured their trip to the 2016 NYTS National Championship Final.

Sloan Stefanakis hitting the ball with Harry Caldwell going for the hook. Photo: Elizabeth Hedley
Sloan Stefanakis hitting the ball with Harry Caldwell going for the hook. Photo: Elizabeth Hedley

The second semifinal game was played on the historic Gibney field. Zone 1 (Pacific Coast, Pacific Northwest, Southwestern, Border, Hawaiian, Rocky Mountain), coached by Team USPA member Felipe Viana competed against Zone 2 (Southeastern, Central, Midstates, Great Plains), coached by Henri Du Toit, for the remaining spot in the final. At the onset of the game Zone 2 began with 1.5 goals on the board due to handicap. Zone 1 came out strong in the first chukker with three combined goals from Jake Klentner and Robbie Puente. A goal by Carlos Font, had Zone 2 trailing by .5 at the end of the first chukker. Two unanswered goals from Zone 2 in the second chukker, combined with solid defense by Jack McLean, put Zone 2 in the lead 4.5-3 at halftime. After the half, the roles reversed and the third and fourth chukkers saw four unanswered goals by Zone 1. Despite a valiant effort, Zone 2 was unable to capitalize on many fouls they were awarded. Zone 1 on the other hand, converted two out of three of their penalty shots, which ultimately led to their victory.

NYTS finalists Zone 1: Jack McLean, Carlos Font, Andrew Beck, Harry Caldwell. Photo: Elizabeth Hedley
NYTS Championship Finalists Zone 1: Jake Klentner, Ronnie Puente, Conrad Kissling, Sloan Stefanakis

Sunday, September 4
1:30pm ET - Consolation: Zone 2 vs. Zone 4
3:00pm ET - Championship Final: Zone 1 vs. Zone 3

The finals of the 2016 NYTS Championship will be streamed on polochannel.com Sunday, September 4 at 5:00pm ET.

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