Galindo Rebounds to Lead BTA to Win
By Alex Webbe
With a swollen and protruding lower lip reminiscent of â€œBubbaâ€ Blue in Forrest Gump,
7-goaler Hector Galindo took the field for BTA just three days after being hit in the face with a swinging mallet during their last match and led them to an 11-9 win over Patagones Wednesday afternoon. Galindo was unable to continue last Sundayâ€™s being taken from the field to the hospital midway through the fifth chukker.
â€œHard work from everyone,â€ said Galindo from behind a bandage that covered the injured lip. â€œWe kept playing the same strategy for six chukkers,â€ he added.
BTA scored the first two goals of the game on a penalty shot from Jeff Blake and a goal from the field from Galindo. Carlos Avendano kept Patagones from being blanked in the opening chukker with a goal to end the chukker.
Pablo Spinnaci converted a well-placed pass from Blake for another BTA goal in the second chukker, but Patagones fought right back. Trailing 3-1, Julio Gracida and his uncle Carlos Gracida scored single goals to tie it at 3-3. Patagones patron Gonzalo Avendano suffered a fall in the last minutes of the second chukker injuring his left ankle, and was unable to continue. Time was called while Mariano Gracida, Carlos Gracidaâ€™s 15-year-old son entered the game, and play continued. Spinnaciâ€™s second goal of the game put BTA on top 4-3, but Julio Gracida took advantage of a Patagones four and converted a penalty shot for the tying goal. The chukker ended all even at 4-4.
Carlos Gracida put Patagones on top, 5-4 in the opening minutes of the third chukker, but the lead was short-lived. Galindo playing like man possessed, scored two goals from the field to move BTA out to a 6-5 lead. A closing penalty conversion from Carlos Gracida knotted it up again at 6-6 to end the first half of play.
â€œI thought we got control of the game in the second half,â€ said Spinnaci, reflecting on the ebb and flow of the game. And he might have been right.
A stiff defense kept Patagones off the board in the fourth chukker while Blakeâ€™s single goal gave BTA a 7-6 lead.
Two more goals from Blake made it 9-7 with Carlos Gracidaâ€™s single penalty conversion being the only bankable offense provided by Patagones in the fifth.
â€œWe had our chances,â€ the former 1-goaler said, â€œwe just couldnâ€™t take advantage of them.â€
Carlos Gracida scored in the sixth chukker to cut the BTA lead to a single goal, 9-8, but the injured Galindo matched him with a penalty goal. Carlos fought back once more, scoring a hard-fought goal for Patagones to cut the lead to a single goal with two minutes left to play, but the day belonged to BTA and Hector Galindo. Galindo scored his fifth goal of the match for the 11-9 win and the right to face San Saba in Sundayâ€™s finals of the 2009 Joe Barry Memorial Cup.
I wasnâ€™t comfortable about the win until the 30 second bell sounded,â€ said Jeff Blake, â€œwith Carlos Gracida on the field, you can never be sure.â€
Galindo led BTA with five goals. Jeff Blake scored four times and Pablo Spinnaci added two goals in the win.
Carlos Gracida led the field with six goals on the day. Julio Gracida scored twice and Carlos Avendano added a goal for Patagones.
Twenty-goal action continues on Thursday, January 15 at 1pm when EFG Bank meets Lucchese in the semifinals of the Bobby Barry Memorial Cup. A 3pm semifinal contest will feature Isla Carroll and Mt. Brilliant.
In a see-saw battle that determined Sundayâ€™s finalist in the 2009 Joe Barry Memorial Cup, it was Kelly Bealâ€™s BTA lineup that would carry the day and assure everyone of an all-Texas final.