The women’s polo team’s quest for a spot in the national final is still alive after the team clinched the Eastern Regional division with a 24-9 victory over the University of Connecticut last Saturday at Oxley Equestrian Center.
Cornell advanced to the regional final after defeating, 37-4, the University of Massachusetts in the semifinal game. This was the second time that both teams met during this season. The Red defeated UMass in the first game of the regular campaign with a 31-7 score at Oxley.
“When we learned we were going to play UMass, we knew that the most important thing was to keep our execution of polo at a consistent level,” said junior captain Lizzie Wisner. “We had already defeated them earlier this year, so we liked our chances going into the game.”
Cornell was the favorite to win the Regionals throughout the entire tournament and was able to fulfill the expectations in the final game of the competition where it met Eastern Region rival Connecticut.
Cornell’s starting lineup of Wisner, junior Jessica Cross and senior Erin Bold took the initial lead of the game early during the first chukker. Then, UConn went ahead 2-1 with a two-point foul shot to gain its first and only lead of the entire game.
The Red quickly responded with a three-goal streak to end the first chukker with a 5-2 advantage.Cornell went to outscore its opponent seven goals to two during the second chukker to enter the halftime break with 12-4 lead.
The Red tallied five more goals during the third, compared to the Huskies’ three, to extend its advantage to 10 goals in a 17-7 score.
Cornell came out strong during the last period of regulation to net seven more goals and held UConn to only two goals, to finish the game 24-9.
With the victory, the Red qualified for the National Championships, which will be held at Chrlottesville, Va.
“We are very excited to start practicing and preparing for the Nationals,” said Wisner. “We are focused on playing our game and preventing what happened to us last year, where we lost in the national final to Virginia.”
Original Author: AJ Ortiz