May 22, 2018 8:47 PM

UVA's Jessica Schmidt. ©Amy Purdy.
UVA's Jessica Schmitt. ©Amy Purdy.

Since 1922, Intercollegiate and Interscholastic teams (I/I) have squared off in national tournaments around the country. The USPA Intercollegiate/Interscholastic National Host Tournament Committee is elated to announce the venues for the 2019 National I/I Tournaments.

Intercollegiate men began competing in 1922, with Princeton bringing home the silver in the inaugural tournament. Yale University claims the most titles, with nineteen. The Texas A&M University Aggies bested all teams in 2018 for their tenth championship. Intercollegiate women took to the stage in 1976 with Yale University claiming the first title. The women of Cornell hold the race for titles at fifteen, but Texas A&M University took the trophies home to College Station in 2018, quenching a 22-year drought. Texas A&M made history in the intercollegiate division for the first Texas team to capture both the Men’s and Women’s division in the same year. TAMU joins UC Davis (‘78,’81, ’82, ’83) and UVA (’93) with those honors.

The 2019 USPA National Intercollegiate Host Site has been awarded to the Virginia Polo Center (Charlottesville, Virginia), home to the UVA Cavaliers. “We are excited to take the NIC to the Southeastern Region and especially to the beautiful facility of Virginia Polo Center,” said I/I Program Director Amy Fraser. “The city of Charlottesville is a great destination and a great location with access to many local I/I teams and horses.” The 2019 National Intercollegiate Championship is scheduled for the week of April 1.

The Interscholastic division, now referred to as the “Open Division," came to the national stage in 1928, where Manluis School raised the trophy. Culver Military Academy holds claim to twelve championships. 2018 saw Maryland Polo Club repeating as Open Division Champions. An all-girls tournament, the "Girls’ Division" was sanctioned in 1991, when the ladies of the Santa Ynez bested the competition. Garrison Forest School has thirteen titles to their name. In 2018, Maryland Polo Club topped all teams to bring their total to eight titles. 2018 saw for the first time in the program’s history national titles from the same club for both the Open and Girls’ Division with Maryland Polo Club.

The 2019 USPA Open & Girls’ National Interscholastic Championships will be combined into one event, and hosted by the Houston Polo Club in Houston, Texas. “Combining the Open and Girls’ National Interscholastic Championship is an idea we have been considering for a couple of seasons now,” added Fraser. When Houston approached us with the same idea, we knew with their support 2019 was the year to make it happen. By combining the two events, we hope to drum up more excitement by making it a bigger and better event with more teams, players and games over the weekend. The Central region is always tremendous in the support of I/I tournaments and we are looking forward to making the Open and Girls’ Nationals a magical event.” The National Interscholastic Championships will be held in March of 2019.

The mission of the Intercollegiate/Interscholastic (I/I) Committee of the United States Polo Association (USPA) is to promote and grow the sport of polo by providing maximum exposure to the sport; recruiting collegiate and scholastic institutions; coordinating activities of member schools and players; providing for organized competition including sponsoring and administering regional and national tournaments with an emphasis on sportsmanship, fairness, and safety; and by effectively utilizing funding for the benefit of I/I activities.