The Westmont Men’s Polo Team (Patrick Uretz, David Samaniego, Tony Uretz and Jake Bergman) has won this impressive National title for the second year in a row. There are 4 USPA Intercollegiate regions in the country, 23 men’s teams and 34 women’s teams. Last month in San Luis Obispo, Westmont Men won their Western Region against Stanford 22-3 in the regional finals, qualifying them for the Nationals as the #1 seed.
Just a few days ago at the ’14 USPA National Intercollegiate Championships (NIC) just out side of Houston, Texas at the beautiful ERG Arena, the Westmont Men played the first game in the semi finals against Cornell winning by 1 point and going on to the National Championship finals against the formidable Univ. of Virginia. The Westmont team was ahead the entire game, even though the UVA team kept the score very close. The Warriors eventually won 16-14 in a very-hard fought and exciting game.
The boys found the competition tougher than anticipated. Their sheer determination, excellent riding skills and great teamwork made all the difference in the end. Coach John Westley was extremely proud of his team knowing that going into a tournament to defend a title can be much more difficult than going in seeded 5th. Coach Westley felt more prepared with their game strategies that they had worked on all season and was confident that his boys could change the game up to get the end result they needed. Coach Westley was also confident in our 4th player Jake Bergman, as a strong option had one of the starting players gotten injured.
Patrick Uretz, the team captain, was awarded the tournament “AllStar Team” award and David Samaniego received the tournament “Sportsmanship” award.
In 2012 Westmont made it to the Championship finals game against UVA and lost by a very narrow margin. Last year in the 2013 National Championships, the Westmont men were seeded last out of 5 teams (even though the Westmont team had qualified to play at nationals an impressive 7 times in 10 years and had gotten into the finals 2 of those 8 times.) The Westmont Men beat Southern Methodist University the first day, getting into the semi-finals and defeating the mighty UVA by 2 goals, and then beating Colorado State University by 3 goals in an extremely intense Championship finals. This 2013 national win by the Westmont Men was the first time since 1989 that a college team in the Western Region (UC Davis) had won this National Trophy.