The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

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The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

Polo heads to nationals

The+SMU+polo+team+won+Regionals+this+past+weekend%2C+clearing+the+path+to+the+National+Championship.
SMU Athletics
The SMU polo team won Regionals this past weekend, clearing the path to the National Championship.

The SMU polo team won Regionals this past weekend, clearing the path to the National Championship. (SMU Athletics)

The Southern Methodist University mascot is a mustang, so naturally a polo team is a necessary addition.

In 2009, Enrique Ituarte, a freshman at the time, came to SMU and realized there wasn’t one.

Ituarte had played polo at the charter school he attended back in Indiana and wanted to bring the sport to SMU.

With the help of his family and his old coach, his dreams were able to come to fruition.

The program currently has 15 horses, a considerably smaller number than other schools who have around 40 horses in their stables.

Despite their small size, both the men and women’s teams have made great strides as new organizations.

This past weekend, the men’s team won Regionals and gained entry into the National Championship tournament.

Meanwhile the women’s team barely missed their shot at Nationals after losing in the final match to a favored Texas A&M team.

This is SMU’s first time in history to make it to Nationals for polo.

“It’s unbelievable. This is the third year we’ve even had polo at the school, our second year at tournament level, and we had both teams make regional level,” coach Tom Goodspeed said.

In addition to their success as a team, several standout players have made significant accomplishments of their own.

In the Regional tournament, four women and four men are selected to an “All-Star” team to represent the best players from the six attending schools.

Two SMU men, Ituarte and August Schearer and two SMU women, Chloe Carabasi and Pamela Flanagan were named to the team.

This is an incredible feat to name these four players to the “All-Star” team from such a new program.

The polo season runs from mid-November to late April and everyone is welcome to come tryout – no horse or experience is needed.

“Anyone who wants to try is welcome to come try. We want this to be a long lasting program at SMU,” Ituarte said.

The National Championship tournament will be held in Ithaca, New York from April 16 through April 22. 

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