Bendabout to Meet Faraway in Sundayâ€™s Finals
By Alex Webbe
Julio Gracida and Julio Arellano combined for ten goals as Faraway fought off a resilient Mt. Brilliant rally in the semifinals of the 2011 Joe Barry Memorial Cup Wednesday afternoon in an exciting 10-9 win.
The victory launches Faraway into Sundayâ€™s finals against a surging and undefeated Bendabout team that made short work of a previously unbeaten Lucchese foursome.
The late afternoon match pitted brother against brother as Bo Goodmanâ€™s Mt. Brilliant foursome took on Hutton Goodmanâ€™s Faraway squad at the International Polo Club in Wellington.
Faraway scored early and often, with American 9-goaler Julio Arellano scoring twice from the field and once on a penalty conversion. The early Mt. Brilliant attack resulted in a single first chukker goal from Mike Azzaro.
Julio Gracida opened the second chukker with a goal from the field followed by a penalty goal from Arellano for a 5-1 lead. Bo Goodman got Mt. Brilliant on the scoreboard before the period ended, but Faraway held a 5-2 lead.
A reorganized Mt. Brilliant offense took the field in the third chukker, getting field goals from Azzaro and Nic Roldan. Roldan added a penalty goal at the end of the chukker to knot it up at 5-5 as the first half ended, as Faraway was shut out for the first time in the game.
Arellano and Gracida reignited the Faraway attack in the fourth. Arellano added another goal from the field while Gracida converted a penalty shot for a score. Mt. Brilliant made several runs at the Faraway goal, but errant shots and an alert defense kept them from scoring. The chukker ended with Faraway moving ahead by a score of 7-5.
The teams swapped goals in the fifth, with Mt. Brilliantâ€™s Roldan notching two from the field and Gracida converting a pair of penalty shots for Faraway to hold the two goal lead, 9-7.
Mt. Brilliant got sixth chukker goals from Azzaro and Roldan, but Gracidaâ€™s fifth goal of the contest was all Faraway needed for a hard-fought 10-9 victory.
BENDABOUT 12, LUCCHESE 8
In earlier action, Bendabout handed Lucchese its first loss of the season in a 12-8 win, and captured the other position in the finals of the 2011 Joe Barry Memorial Cup at the International Polo Club in Wellington.
Lucchese took an early 4-3 lead after two chukkers of play, but got derailed by a determined Bendabout attack that outscored them 5-1 in third chukker play and closed out the first half with a comfortable 8-5 lead.
Two more unanswered goals in the fourth game Bendabout more momentum as they rode off with a 12-8 win over an impotent Lucchese attack.
The win kept Bendabout (4-0) undefeated in tournament play and placed them in Sundayâ€™s 3 pm finals against Faraway (2-2).