Cornell’s Kevin Gardner takes a penalty shot during their 16-15 win over Yale at the Northeastern II Open Preliminary Regional Championships at the Yale Polo and Equestrian Center on Sunday, February 7, 2016. Provided photo

The following is a letter from a community organization or member and NOT written by the Ithaca Voice … to submit community announcements to The Voice, contact us at jalmendarez@ithacavoice.com.

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The Cornell Interscholastic Open division polo team won the Northeastern II Open Preliminary Regional tournament finals on Sunday, February 7, with a victory over Yale at the Yale Polo and Equestrian Center in Bethany, CT.

Cornell executed their finals game plan to perfection in the first half and jumped out to a 13-5 lead and fought off a valiant comeback attempt by Yale to hold on for the 16-15 win. With the win the team has qualified for the Northeastern Open Regional Championships, to be hosted at the University of Connecticut Feb. 19 – 21.

In addition, Sam Quinn-Jacobs and Michael Koski were each voted to the 4-member tournament All-Star team by their peers, recognizing their exemplary play and high-level of sportsmanship.  Both players received this award for the second year in a row.

Making the trip to the tournament this weekend were Kevin Gardner (8th grade, Dryden), Michael Koski (11th grade, Spencer – Van Etten), Sam Quinn – Jacobs (11th grade, New Roots School), and Hannah Roman (11th grade, Southern Cayuga).

Cornell Interscholastic Open accepts their trophies for their tournament finals win, 16-15 over Yale. Picture (L to R): Leighton Jordan, USPA Northeastern Circuit Governor; Anthony Condo, Cornell Interscholastic Coach; Sam Quinn-Jacobs; Kevin Gardner; Michael Koski; Hannah Roman; David Wenning, USPA Interscholastic/Intercollegiate Chairman. Provided photo

The players are coached by David Eldredge, Cornell’s Peter B. Orthwein Head Coach of Polo; and Anthony Condo, a volunteer Assistant Coach, who handles Interscholastic team organization and scheduling, and travels with the team to their away games and postseason tournaments.  The tournament participants included teams from Yale, Cornell, Stage Hill (Newbury, MA), and Country Farms (Medford, NY).

The Cornell Interscholastic Open division team consists of local student members from various middle and high schools in the Ithaca area.  Players are eligible to compete on the Interscholastic division team for any USPA member club that participates in the Interscholastic program within 100 miles of their home address.

Cornell’s Kevin Gardner takes a penalty shot during their 16-15 win over Yale at the Northeastern II Open Preliminary Regional Championships at the Yale Polo and Equestrian Center on Sunday, February 7, 2016. Provided photo

The Cornell players start practice in October on Wednesday nights, practicing one night a week, and then host a slate of 6 to 7 home matches during the winter intersession. Games played against Northeastern regional opponents qualify them for postseason play.

The teams may consist of all boys or mixed boys and girls teams (Open Division), or teams of all girls players (Girls Division).

Area students with riding experience who would like to learn more about the Interscholastic program are encouraged to contact Anthony Condo at Anthony.M.Condo@gmail.com for more information.

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Jolene Almendarez

Jolene Almendarez is Managing Editor at The Ithaca Voice. She can be reached at jalmendarez@ithacavoice.com; you can learn more about her at the links in the top right of this box.