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USPA Fall Classic-Grand Champions Polo Club


Flight Options and CT Energia in USPA Fall Classic Final

By Alex Webbe

The rain-delayed start of the 2014 USPA Fall Classic got underway on Saturday afternoon in a game that saw Flight Options (Gene Goldstein, Wes Finlayson, Guille Aguero and Juan Bollini) fight off a determined Postage Stamp Farm foursome (Annabelle Garret, Julio Gracida, Brandon Phillips and Roberto Gonzalez) 10-8 to earn a berth in Sunday’s 3PM tournament final.

Gene Goldstein scored first for Flight Options on a penalty shot followed by a goal from the field from Guille Aguero. Brandon Phillips responded with a penalty conversion to end the chukker. Flight Options won the first round, 2-1. Aguero’s second goal of the game was sandwiched between goals from Phillips and Roberto Gonzalez. After two periods of play it was all even at 3-3.

Phillips scored the go-ahead goal to open the third, 4-3, but Flight Options fired back. Aguero tied it at 4-4 on a penalty conversion and Goldstein’s second goal of the game had Flight Options in the lead, 5-4, at the end of the first half.

Aguero opened the second half with back to back penalty conversions, 7-4. Phillips scored on a penalty shot to keep Postage Stamp Farm in it, 7-5.

Wes Finlayson scored his first goal of the game for an 8-5 Flight Options advantage, but Postage Stamp Farm stormed back. Consecutive goals from Phillips and Gonzalez ended the period with Flight Options guarding a delicate 8-7, one goal lead.

Flight Options stretched their led to three goals, 10-7, with Goldstein and Finlayson each scoring a goal from the field. Postage Stamp Farm kept the pressure on but managed just one more goal on a penalty shot from Phillips in the 10-8 loss.

Phillips led all scoring with six goals (three on penalty conversions). Gonzalez scored twice in a losing cause. Aguero scored three of his team high five goals on penalty shots for flight Options. Goldstein added three goals and Finlayson scored twice. The win boosted Flight Options into Sunday’s 3PM USPA Fall Classic final.

CT Energia wins round-robin with consecutive wins

Alessandro Bazzoni’s CT Energia polo team (Carlitos Gracida, Alessandro Bazzoni, Marc Ganzi and Kris Kampsen) downed Palm Beach Equine (Juancito Bollini, Leo Mandelbaum, Nic Roldan and Scott Swerdlin) and Casablanca (Grant Ganzi, Alejandro Gonzalez, Jesse Bray and Martin Pepa) to earn a spot in Sunday’s final against Flight Options.

Palm Beach Equine took the early lead on goals from Nic Roldan. Roldan opened the game with a goal from the field, 1-0. Alessandro Bazzoni responded with a goal from CT Energia, 1-1. A penalty conversion and a goal from the field from Roldan ended the chukker with Palm Beach Equine in the lead, 3-1.

Single second chukker goals from Juancito Bollini (penalty goal), Roldan and Leo Mandelbaum were answered by a pair of goals from the field from Kris Kampsen. After two chukkers Palm Beach Equine owned a 6-3 lead.

The third and final chukker of the mini game in the day’s three team round robin went to CT Energia as they outscored Palm Bach Equine, 5-1 in the last period, 8-7. Five consecutive goals from CT Energia had Palm Beach Equine down by two, 8-6. Juancito Bollini scored the final goal of the game, but it was CT Energia with the win, 8-7.

Palm Beach Equine held the field for the next three chukkers against Casablanca (Grant Ganzi, Alejandro Gonzalez, Jesse Bray and Martin Pepa) hoping that the first three chukkers would serve as a warm-up for their meeting with Casablanca, but it didn’t.

Roldan sunk one from over 110-yards out for the early 1-0 lead, as Casablanca was held scoreless in the opening chukker. Palm Beach Equine was unable to sustain an ongoing attack and settled for the early 1-0 edge.

Casablanca exploded for four goals in the second period. Two from Alejandro Gonzalez and a pair from Bray had Casablanca in the lead, 4-1. Juancito Bollini accounted for the only goal of the period from Casablanca, 4-2.

Juancito Bollini converted a penalty shot for a goal, cutting the Casablanca lead to a single goal, 4-3, but that was where it ended. Martin Pepa scored the final goal of the game for a 5-3 Casablanca win. The loss was the second for Palm Beach Equine and eliminated them from the tournament. Casablanca would face CT Energia to decide Sunday’s second tournament finalist.

The final three chukkers of the round-robin featured CT Energia and Casablanca, with the winner going into the final.

Goals from Bazzoni and Carlitos Gracida gave CT Energia the early 2-0 lead with Pepa and Grant Ganzi responded for Casablanca with single goals. The chukker ended in a 2-2 tie.

CT Energia took the lead in the second period on a second goal from Gracida and a pair of penalty goals from Kris Kampsen. Single goals from Bray and Pepa kept Casablanca close, but CT Energia held the 5-4 lead with once chukker left to be played.

Kampsen converted another penalty shot for a goal, 6-4 when Casablanca rallied. A goal from the field from Gonzalez and a penalty goal from Bray had it all even at 6-6 with time running out. A foul in the waning seconds of the game sent Bazzoni to the penalty line where he converted the winning goal, lifting CT Energia into the Sunday final against Flight Options.

Kampsen led all scoring on the day with eight goals (three on penalty conversions). Gracida and Bazzoni scored three times each on the day with Marc Ganzi adding a goal from the field for CT Energia.