Not only was this past Sunday opening Sunday at the Houston Polo Club, but it also hosted a double header of two games that were decided in the last minutes of each game!
Island Time Polo/Plank Companies’ Tommy Alberdi (black jersey) goes to goal with Horsegate’s Jorge Cernadas in pursuit
The first game that kicked off Sunday polo was between Island Time Polo/Plank Companies versus Horsegate. Horsegate held a .5 goal lead on the board to start the game due to handicap differences between the teams. Both teams held a defensive battle in the first chukker, with neither team getting the ball between the goal posts. Horsegate’s Anson Moore scored back to back goals at the start of the second chukker, while Island Time Polo/Plank Companies’ Joe Wayne Barry answered with one goal of his own. Horsegate’s Jorge Cernadas extended his team’s lead in the third chukker, but Island Time Polo/Plank Companies’ Tommy Alberdi held his team in the game with a goal at the end of the chukker to trail 2 to 3.5 going into the fourth and final chukker. Horsegate’s Moore scored again from the field making the score 4.5 to 2, but Island Time Polo/Plank Companies’ Alberdi took control of the game and scored 3 unanswered goals in an exciting finish to give his team the win with the final score of 5 to 4.5
BCI/San Pedro Ranch’s Chad Bowman (green) reaches for the hook on BTA’s Joao Aranha
After the first game, spectators had a chance to stretch their legs and enjoy Houston’s April weather. Complimentary champagne was served as the crowd stomped divots and chatted with friends. Before long, it was time to start the second game, and everyone returned to their seats to see what the next match had in store.
BTA’s Billy Mudra (red jersey) stretches out for a break away with his son Will Mudra (green) on the chase
BTA started the game with one goal on handicap against BCI/San Pedro Ranch, but BCI/San Pedro Ranch took quick control in the first chukker with two goals from Will Mudra and Troy Lequerica. BCI/San Pedro Ranch’s Chad Bowman kept the pressure on as he scored their team’s third unanswered goal of the game. BTA’s Billy Mudra was the first to break the seal, scoring back to back goals to tie the game at 3 to 3 at the end of the second chukker. Bowman converted two open goal penalties in the third chukker, but BTA’s Billy Mudra answered with a penalty shot of his own, followed by teammate Joao Aranha scoring one from the field to keep the game tied at 5 to 5 at the end of the third chukker. Starting the fourth chukker, BTA found themselves in foul trouble as Bowman converted his third penalty shot of the day followed by an impressive run by teammate Nicolai Galindo to give BCI/San Pedro Ranch a 2 goal lead with 1:30 left in regulation. BTA had a penalty shot opportunity to come within 1 goal, but missed it wide. As the clock ticked down, BTA’s KC Krueger recovered a loose ball and scored the final goal of the game, but it was too late, as BCI/San Pedro Ranch took home the win with the final score of 7 to 6.
Winning team: BCI/San Pedro Ranch Troy Lequerica, Will Mudra, Chad Bowman, Nicolai Galindo pictured with Todd Riemenschneider from QR Jets and Dominic Guerrieri from Champagne Charles Heidsieck
MVP: Nicolai Galindo, pictured with Todd Riemenschneider from QR Jets and Dominic Guerrieri from Champagne Charles Heidsieck
BPP: Mona Lisa played by KC Krueger, pictured with Carty & Shirley Krueger and Chrys and Kelly Beal with the BTA crew, and presented by Brooks Ballard and Alex Chavez from Engel&Völkers Houston