A First in RWU History, Polo Team Advances to Finals in National Championship Tournament

Cheer on the Hawks from a live-stream on campus as they play in the finals this Saturday

A polo player rides a horse around the field.
Daymar Rosser '18 during a recent practice.
Edward Fitzpatrick

Editor's note: This story has been updated on Friday, April 7, with reporting from the Athletics Communications Department.

SANTA BARBARA, CALIF. – In a strong showing against a tough competitor, the Roger Williams University Men's Polo team advanced to the United States Polo Association Intercollegiate National Championship with a 10-8 victory over Cornell University Thursday afternoon.

The Hawks were led by George Hempt (Mechanicsburg, Pa.), who paced the way for RWU with five goals. Daymar Rosser (Philadelphia, Pa.) added three goals for RWU, while Pedro Cabrera (Santo Domingo, D.R.) tallied two goals.
 
Roger Williams never trailed in the match, jumping out to a 2-0 lead and going ahead 3-2 at the end of the first chukka. Cornell stayed within striking distance in the second period, but the Hawks would not give up the lead, taking a 5-4 advantage into the break.
 
Both teams added two goals apiece in the third chukka, allowing RWU to maintain its one goal advantage. In the final frame, RWU outscored Cornell 3-2 to take the 10-8 win and make their way to the title match.
 
Roger Williams will face Southern Methodist University in the national championship match. Watch the competition live from the Richard L. Bready Mount Hope Bay Sailing and Educaiton Center, starting at 5 p.m. Saturday, via live-stream at https://www.uspolo.org/video/.

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Published on March 31, 2017.

Just one year after its creation, the Roger Williams University men's polo team is headed to the national championship tournament.

The Hawks will compete as the No. 2 seed in the six-team field at the United States Polo Association Intercollegiate National Championship Tournament in Santa Barbara, Calif., April 3-8. The team is coming off a 15-14 win over Cornell University in the Northeast Regional Championship.

“You don’t see too many programs that can be that good this quickly,” said David M. Kemmy, RWU’s director of athletics, intramurals and recreation. “To have polo achieve at this level is pretty awesome. Little Roger Williams University is competing with the big boys.”

The five other teams vying for the national championship are the University of Virginia (the No. 1 seed), Texas A&M, Cornell University, Southern Methodist University and California Polytechnic State University.

Coached by Ted Torrey, the RWU team consists of three sophomores: Pedro Cabrera, George Hempt and Daymar Rosser. The team's practices and home games this season took place at Newport Polo's private instructional polo arena in Portsmouth. Newport Polo hosts the Newport International Polo Series.

Torrey, who coached the RWU equestrian team from 2011-16, suggested adding the polo team, Kemmy said. Brown University has the only other college polo team in Rhode Island, he said. The RWU women’s polo team is getting going this semester, and Torrey also is coaching that team, he said.


The RWU men's polo team, from left to right: George Hempt '19, Head Coach Ted Torrey, Pedro Cabrera '19 and Daymar Rosser '18.