By Alex Webbe
Additional 4-goal polo at Empire over the weekend included Thermal Polo’s 10-8 win over Flowers Farms; Empire4’s 8-5 victory over Parklane and a 10-7.5 win by Parklane at the expense of Thermal Polo.
In a Saturday afternoon contest, Parklane (Bill Garlock, Cameron Smith, Remy Muller and Nicolas Maciel) scored a 10-7.5 win over Thermal Polo (Reg Whyte, Romero Gonzalez, Hayward Pardue and Pete Laughlin) in one of the season’s first match using the new handicapping system. In an effort to expand the lower end of the handicap scale, the USPA has added the half-goal addition to differentiate between the different levels of play between players of the same handicap.
Thermal Polo received .5 goal handicap to start the game, with Reg Whyte adding a goal from the field. Parklane responded with a pair of goals from Remy Muller to take the early 2-1.5 lead.
Pete Laughlin and Romero Gonzalez added single goals to the Thermal Polo total, but Parklane put three more goals on the scoreboard with Muller adding his third and fourth goals of the game while Nicolas Maciel scored once in the 5-3.5 game.
Thermal Polo got its offense clicking in the third chukker with Hayward Pardue scoring his first goal of the day. Laughlin added a goal from the field and another on a penalty shot in leading Thermal Polo to its first lead of the game, 6.5-5. Muller scored the lone goal for Parklane.
A four goal output in the fourth period had Parklane riding a 10-6.5 lead as Muller added three more goals and Maciel chipped in his second scoring shot of the day.
The Thermal Polo offense was shut down as they trailed by three-and-a-half goals with one chukker to play.
Thermal continued to press the attack in the fifth but managed only a single penalty goal from Gonzalez as Parklane cruised to a 10-7.5 win.
Muller led all scoring with eight goals. Maciel scored twice in the victory.
Laughlin scored three times for Thermal Polo. Gonzalez added two goals while Whyte and Pardue scored one goal apiece. The team received one-half goal by handicap.
EMPIRE4 8, PARKLANE 5
Empire4 (Leigh Brecheen, Rob Scapa, Charlie Peterson and Lolo Payan) used a balanced attack to score an 8-5 win over Parklane in Sunday’s morning contest with every member of the team getting on the scoreboard.
First chukker goals from Leigh Brecheen, Rob Scapa and Charlie Peterson shot Empire out to an early 3-2 lead as Muller accounted for two goals (one from the field and one by penalty shot) for Parklane.
Empire stretched its lead to three goals in the second as Lolo Payan and Scapa scored single goals while a stubborn defense held Parklane scoreless for the chukker. Empire4 rode off the field with a 5-2 advantage and teamplay that dominated the Parklane lineup.
Cameron Smith’s first goal of the day gave early encouragement to the Parklane quartet, but Peterson retaliated with one goal from the field and another on a 40-yard penalty conversion as Empire4 sat on top of a 7-3 lead. Smith scored his second goal of the game in the fourth period but failed to spark the Parklane offense. Empire4 failed to score for the first time all day but continued to lead, 7-4.
Peterson converted a 40-yard penalty shot to open the scoring in the fifth for an 8-4 Empire4 lead but Parklane continued to press the attack. Muller closed out the scoring in the chukker as Empire4 rode on to the 8-5 victory.
Peterson set the pace for Empire4 (1-1) with four goals. Scapa scored twice and Brecheen and Payan scored single goals for the win.
Muller scored three times for Parklane (1-1). Smith added two goals in the loss.
THERMAL POLO 10, FLOWERS FARMS 8
Thermal Polo took an early 3-2 lead in a see-saw opening chukker of play on a pair of goals from Romero Gonzalez and a single goal from the field from Hayward Pardue. Flowers Farms (Erik Wright, David flowers, Ernie Ezcurra and Jef Graham) fired back with single goals from Erik Wright and Ernie Ezcurra.
Graham and Ezcurra scored on consecutive goals for a 4-3 Flowers Farms edge, but the celebration was short-lived. Gonzalez scored once from the field and Pete Laughlin scored on a penalty shot and a shot from the field. After two chukkers of play Thermal Polo led, 6-4.
Defense was theme of the third period with Gonzalez scoring the only goal of the chukker. Thermal Polo continued to lead, 7-4.
Wright added two goals in the fourth for Flowers Farms, scoring once from the field and once from the penalty line, but Thermal Polo was up to the challenge. Single goals from Laughlin, Pardue and Gonzalez had Flowers Farms trailing 10-6 with seven minutes left to play.
With the Thermal Polo team easing up on the reins, Ezcurra managed to add two more goals to the Flowers Farm total, but it was Thermal Polo with the 10-8 win.
Gonzalez accounted for five Thermal Polo (1-1) goals. Laughlin added three goals and Pardue scored twice.
Ezcurra led the Flowers Farms (0-2) team with four goals. Wright scored three times and Jef Graham added a goal in a losing effort.