McClure River Ranch (Alejandro Poma, Marc Ganzi, Nic Roldan and Jared Zenni) met Los Amigos (Paul Foster, Michael Bickford, Politio Pieres and Alejandro Novillo Astrada) yesterday on Field One at the Aspen Valley Polo Club.
The first chukker started out fast and furious, with both teams up and down the field but unable to score. It wasn’t until the 3-minute mark in the second chukker that Alejandro Poma put the first goal on the board after picking up a trademark long drive from Nic Roldan. Michael Bickford scored on a penalty 3 to end the second chukker tied at 1-1. In the third, Bickford scored again to put Los Amigos briefly in the lead at 2-1, but a succession of goals by Zenni, Roldan and Ganzi left McClure River Ranch in the lead by 4-2 at the half.
In the fourth chukker, McClure River Ranch kept Los Amigos off the board, while Jared Zenni knocked one in for the team, putting McClure River ahead 5-2. Ganzi and Poma scored in the fifth, bringing the score up to 7-2, but at the last minute, Paul Foster came from the left and put the ball through, bringing the score to 7-3. Alejandro Poma started the final with a spectacular open back shot at full speed to put his team ahead 8-3. With slightly more than four minutes left in the game, Foster scored with a slick neck shot. Novillo Astrada scored the last goal of the game, but Los Amigos fell to McClure River Ranch with a final score of 8-5.
Nic Roldan was named MVP, and Aspen, owned and played by Marc Ganzi, was the Best Playing Pony. Aspen was bred by Pablo Spinacci.
While admission is traditionally open and free to the public, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the club to close to spectators for the foreseeable future. AVPC has taken this step out of an abundance of caution. Players and staff have been tested in 3 rounds at sister club Grand Champions Polo in Florida since March and will continue to be tested throughout the 2020 summer season.