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Club News & Information

In May 2009 the Habaneros traveled to the beautiful Hill Country of Hunt, TX to compete in one of the larger tournaments of the year. The hospitality at Camp Waldemar is off the hook. Thanks Liz. We fielded 2 teams. Sam, Zach and Jim took on some fierce competition and won all their games by only 1 or 2 points, 2 of them in sudden death overtime. They took 1st place.  Lia and Mae Lee helped another team take 1st place in their division. Mae Lee took Lia’s spot after she bounced a little hard in the 3rd game.

4th of July’s Abajo Tournament took place on the new Abajo Grounds about 11 miles East of Walmart on Hwy 6 in Los Lunas. It was a tremendous event with players coming down from as far North as Fruta, Colorado. The Habaneros traveled southward for two-days of friendly competition and a great time was had by all. Thank you Abajos.



Our Play Day Aug. 2nd and 3rd 2008, featured 20 or so youth from the Adventures Unlimited Camp in Buena Vista, CO. They have been learning about horses and polocrosse, many for the first time, and they enjoyed their first-ever tournament here in Albuquerque! New Mexico's other polocrosse team, the Los Lunas Abajos, came up for a fun-filled friendly day of competitive play. Look for more fun and competition this year Aug 1st & 2nd 2009



The habañero chile (Capsicum Chinese Jacquin) (Spanish, from Havana) is the most intensely spicy chile pepper of the Capsicum genus. Unripe habañeros are green, but the color at maturity varies. Common colors are orange and red, but white, brown, and pink are also seen. Typically a ripe habañero is 2–6 cm (1–2½ in) long.


Information came from:  Wikipedia®, the free encyclopedia

A drawing of several Habañero chili peppers

Member in good standing


Habañero Polocrosse Club

We are hot, Hot, HOT!!!

July 18 & 19  2009  We traveled to beautiful Buena Vista CO. Linda and Lach hosted the first (hopefully annual) Tournament with Adventures Unlimited Camp. The venue was great and we sure enjoyed leaving 100 degree weather back in ABQ. Our C-Team “Anna Salas, Andrew Salas and Mae Lee Van Sumeren” were on fire and took 1st place leaving no prisoners.  Anna was awarded Best Payer In C-grade. Her hard work with her horses really did show. Our B-team “Chris Salas, David Fermin and Uli Salas” Also took 1st place in their division. They really did gel together as a team. I didn’t think Chris’s horse “slug” could move like that. Our A-team “Sam Burrows, Willy Van Sumeren, Jim Byrd” fought hard and missed 1st place by 1 point in their division, happy with 2nd. Sam was awarded best player in the A division. Willy had the highest statistical rating and MaeLee placed 4th overall in stats which includes all divisions combined. Way to go MaeLee. Welcome Leslie Roots as an official Habanero after eating a Habanero at the tournament. This was her first tournament and boy did she have a smile (after the burning quit). We also had 4 more honorary Habaneros from Adventures Unlimited that ate a Habanero. Johnny even ate 2. We will post names in the near future as we are comprising the LIST.

What a blast we had at our tournament Aug 1st & 2nd 2009. 48 players, including Amanda Daniels’s first tournament ever. She also made it official and ate her habanero along with new Honorary Habaneros Lache Clarke and Hugh Veit. There are also many Honorary Habaneros among The Adventures Unlimited group I am working on getting every name. I think this was the best shot at eating a habenaro, cause I think they were really week. We won’t let that happen again. Where are my taste testers? “The level of play was well above expected in all  grades”. Danny Byrd even came out of a 7 year retirement to play with Bill & Janelle Weir.

Here is the Awards: D Grade 3rd place (Habaneros) Leslie Roots, Amanda Daniels. 2nd place (Nighthawk) Brooke Baldwin, Emily Scheu & Kathy Skalbeck. 1st place (Adventures Unlimited) Clarke O’Leary, Dana Hoffenberg & Sterling Mastenbrook. Best Player: Clarke O’Leary. Best Horse: Sugar.(Dana Hoffenberg)  C Grade 3rd place (Abajos) Hunter Veit, Hilton Veit & Grace Vickers. 2nd place (Abajos) Kendra Veit, Amy Ahlgrem & Chris Sweeney. 1st place (Habaneros) Anna Salas, Andrew Salas & Mae Lee van Sumeren. Best Player: Austin Ahlgrem. Best Horse; Lena (MaeLee VanSumeren)   B Grade 3rd place (Kokopelli) Tony Svaldi, Missy Svaldi & Gary Gaylor. 2nd place (Adventures Unlimited) Linda Clarke, Lache Clarke & Caitlin Moss. 1st place (Abajos) Hugh Veit, Greg Veit & Scott Ahlgrem Best Player; Missy Svaldi. Best Horse: ? (Bill Wier)     A Grade 3rd place (Habaneros) Sam Burrows, Zach Levy & Jim Byrd.  2nd place (Nighthawk) Robbie Noiles, Paul Repenning & Lache Clarke.  1st place: (Candystripes) Bill Wier, Danny Byrd & Janelle Wier.  Best Player: Danny Byrd.  Best Horse: Bull (Jim Byrd)


Highlight of the Tournament:  C Grade game Sunday morning Abajos (Hunter, Hilton and Grace) vs Habaneros (Anna, Andrew and MaeLee). Every player did so well and it came down to the last 20 seconds no-one gave up, everyone played as a TEAM.



Sometimes Perfect Polocrosse Weekends just happen and this past Sat and Sunday was PERFECT. We were delighted to have Ian Winwood join us for two days of Funtastic Play. Ian originally hales from Zimbabwe where he played polocrosse with his family. They now reside in AZ and Ian drove the six or so hours across the border to brandish his racket with the Habanero's where he impressed everyone with his horsemanship and ball handling after a two-year hiatus. Aleya Goins from the Los Lunas Abajos also spent the weekend with us where she not only played awesome, calcuated offense but served as the umpire for the faster games. She was assisted by Shane on his Appy, yet again- big thanks to Shane. Linnae is TOTALLY into the game and after the ball after, what, three practices?  Between her strong riding and handy horse we are truly looking at an up-and-coming player. Jim and Willy split the club into groups for coaching and it is already making a difference. We are so lucky to have such skilled AND patient coaches. Thank you, guys.   REMINDER: Pay your $2.50 Field Fee each weekend because you only get to 'owe' FOUR practices (or $10).  Also, if you are NOT a member by the end of January, you will be bumped up to the GUEST Field Fee of $5! Jim is still taking orders for Habanero jackets- so be a good little pepper and get one! See ya' Sunday at noon.

Happy Valentine's Day, Polocrosse Friends!

  We held practice on Saturday and enjoyed a very organized, constructive practice. We used the stop watch and held timed Chukka's to help us get a feel for a real session. It was a tremendous benefit to our horses as well, since some of them are still knee deep in snow and haven't had much saddle time.  


   In addition, Jim, Willy and Sam coached us through our fouls... if the whistle was blown, we spent some time re-creating the event and learning how to safely and legally manuever through. This really helped us gain confidence AND competence and forced us to become more aware and maximize the field limitations. For example, if we got the ball and wanted to head in our direction, there was a tendency to just drag our horse's head over the rear of another horse. This time, we had to really check-up and either use our horse to half-halt and jump forward or use the horse and wheel the other way. Another example is following the line of the ball.... this can be a challenging concept for new players.


  As usual, we have open practice! There is a $5 Field Donation for guests who want to check it out using one of our experienced horses. Or feel free to trailer your horse out and watch from the sidelines. The Field Fee DOES include lunch. Call WILLY at 235-6457 for more information. All ages and all riding disciplines welcome.