After a typical, dry start to our spring, we seemed to have progressed directly into monsoon season here in Aiken. Rain started last weekend, forcing the cancelation of the first, Sunday morning game of the Congressional Cup 4 goal, but let up just long enough for the featured 3 pm match on Whitney Field to be played between showers on an increasingly soggy pitch.
The days that followed turned into a regular guessing game: to play, or not to play? Games were scheduled, and then canceled, on Tuesday and Wednesday. Finally, on Thursday, High Wood Hotels met The Aiken Horse/R&L at Meadow Hill. The teams tacked up in the sunshine, but with threatening skies to the north and east. Although the field had some squishy spots, it was eminently playable — until the wind shifted and the rain started once again, turning the second chukker into a game of water polo. With no obvious sign that the skies would clear and lightning all around, the match was called off at halftime. The two remaining chukkers will be played at a later date to be determined.
Two games are scheduled for Saturday and as of now, the 3pm Sunday match (May 27) between Mullins Land and Simpatico is still on. That could change, however, if we get more rain. The ground is already saturated and there is a limit to how much water even Aiken’s sandy soil can soak up. If you plan to watch polo this weekend, be sure to check the hotline before heading to the field. (803-643-3611) The call will be made by about noon on Sunday, if not earlier. If you are player, keep in contact with our manager Billy Raab for any news and updates.
How long will the rain stick around? With subtropical storm Alberto creeping up from the Gulf of Mexico, it looks like we are in for at least another nine days of wet and stormy weather. The forecast doesn’t call for truly sunny skies until next Monday, June 4. The grass certainly loves it; the players, not so much.