Shootout Propels Dubai and Palm Beach Illustrated/Technogym into Joe Barry Semifinals Against Enigma and Villa del Lago
Wellington, FL – Jan. 27, 2016 – Tiebreaker shootouts Monday set the stage for what is sure to be a battle-royal in the Joe Barry Cup semifinals among four teams that have been playing powerfully. Dubai will oppose Villa del Lago, with undefeated Enigma taking on Palm Beach Illustrated/Technogym. Enigma (3-0) and Villa del Lago (2-1) had already secured spots in the semis during bracket play.
The shootouts were held to determine the rankings of the teams in each bracket. The first shootout determined the rankings of the three teams with 2-1 records in bracket I. The results were: (1) Dubai, (2) Audi-Millarville and (3) Orchard Hill.
Orchard Hill (Polito Pieres) and Dubai (Diego Cavanagh) started the day’s scoring from the 40-yard line; Audi/Millarville (Nic Roldan) missed. Roldan got redemption from the 60, with Pieres missing and Cavanagh scoring. Roldan’s shot looked like it had been blasted from a cannon, sailing toward goal on a straight trajectory barely above the ground. A gasp arose from the sidelines when the ball hit the post, but then it rolled in. Roldan scored again in the next round. Pieres missed, and it looked like Roldan was about to rack up another one. The shot looked great off Roldan’s mallet but faded right and missed the goal.
“Deadeye Diego” (Cavanagh) came through for Dubai, securing its place in the semis with a first-place finish in the bracket I shootout. As they drove from the field, a relieved Cavanagh and teammate Alejo Taranco said they felt “a lot better” than they had the previous day, when Orchard Hill smashed Dubai 17-9. Audi/ Millarville was left in second place with one more chance at a semifinal position, and Orchard Hill was in third place and headed to the Bobby Barry subsidiary.
Facundo Obregon of Palm Beach Illustrated/Technogym was on the sidelines eagerly watching the first shootout to determine placement in bracket I. He had a vested interest in the results, as he knew he had to shoot penalties against the player from the second-placed team in bracket I once those rankings were determined. HTC Tournament Conditions mandate a shootout if there is a tie on win-loss record between the second-placed team in bracket I and the third-placed team in bracket II/III. All the teams competing in the bracket I shootout entered the shootout with a 2-1 record in bracket I, equal to Palm Beach Illustrated/Technogym’s record in bracket play, so Obregon knew he had to be ready to step up to the penalty line once the bracket I shootout was completed. Roldan returned to the penalty line for Audi/Millarville and took another set of penalties against Obregon as the two players battled for the fourth and final spot in the Joe Barry semifinals. Obregon was perfect from the line to snag the last spot in the semis for Palm Beach Illustrated/Technogym.
Monday also determined the lineups for the Bobby Barry subsidiary semifinals: Orchard Hill vs. Tonkawa and Audi/Millarville vs. Coca-Cola. The shootout was live streamed by the USPA Polo Network, as the Joe Barry semifinals (Jan. 29) and final (Jan. 31) will be.