Pennell Cup finals set

Coca-Cola and Villa
Del Lago to meet in

Pennell Cup finals

By Alex Webbe


The return
of the Gracida brothers, Memo and Carlos, to the playing fields of the
International Polo Club was much anticipated, and the two former 10-goalers
didn’t waste any time getting started. 
Memo Gracida took control of the ball in the opening 45 seconds of play
and carried it over 150 yards down the field for the opening goal.  Carlos Gracida followed up the lead set by
his older brother with his first goal of the game for a 2-0 advantage.  Jose Donoso converted a 30-yard penalty shot
for a 3-0 lead that had Villa Del Lago reeling.

Laprida closed out the scoring in the first chukker with a goal from the field
to trail 2-1.

Obregon opened the second period with a goal from the field, followed by a goal
from teammate Polito Pieres for a 3-3 tie. 
A goal from Memo Gracida was followed by a penalty conversion from
Carlos Gracida and La Herradura held a 5-3 advantage.  Pieres cut the lead to a single goal with his
second score of the chukker.  La
Herradura continued to lead, 5-4.

A foul
near the Villa Del Lago goal allowed Carlos Gracida to score on another penalty
shot followed by a goal from the field for a 7-4 lead.   Laprida scored on a penalty shot for Villa Del
Lago but was countered by a goal from the field from Memo Gracida.  At the end of the first half of play La
Herradura was on the winning end of an 8-5 score.

second goal of the game came in the opening minute of the fourth chukker when Donoso
took control of the game.  Three
consecutive goals from the talented Chilean had La Herradura on top, 11-6.   A 40-yard penalty conversion from Laprida
ended the chukker with La Herradura defending an 11-7 edge.

took control in the fifth period with Laprida’s goal from the field accounting
for the only scoring of the chukker.  Villa
Del Lago cut into the La Herradura lead but still trailed by three goals, 11-8.

goals from Pieres and Laprida (penalty shot) had Villa Del Lago within a goal
of La Herradura.  A final effort had
Obregon tapping the ball through the goal posts in the final second of
regulation time for an 11-11 tie and a sudden-death overtime period.

After a
brief intermission of play, both teams returned to the field and battled for
the ball in the opening minute of play. Villa Del Lago pressed the La Herradura
defense.  Less than two minutes into the
overtime La Herradura fouled, sending Pieres to the penalty line.  He shot the ball high and true and Villa Del
Lago celebrated the win and a trip to Sunday’s finals of the 2013 Herbie
Pennell Cup.

led all scoring with five goals on the day for Villa Del Lago.  Obregon added three goals and Pieres  accounted for four goals, including the winner
for the overtime victory.  Carlos Gracida
and Donoso scored four goals apiece for La Herradura.  Memo Gracida added three goals in the loss.





Later in the day, Coca-Coal overwhelmed Victor Vargas and
his Lechuza Caracas teammates in the opening chukker of the second Pennell Cup
of the day, scoring five times and holding Lechuza Caracas to a single
goal.  Coca-Cola jumped out to an early
3-0 lead on a goal from Julio Arellano and a pair of goals from Gillian
Johnston.  Adam Snow finally got Lechuza
Caracas on the scoreboard, but scoring efforts from Sugar Erskine and Arellano
ended the first period with Coca-Cola ahead, 5-1.

Lechuza Caracas started to pick up the rhythm in the second
frame with goals from Tomas Goti (on a well-placed pass from Snow) and team
captain Victor Vargas.  Coca-Cola was
shut out but continued to lead, 5-3.

Scoring was hard to come by in the third period.  Two minutes into the chukker Vargas scored
from the field.  Arellano countered with
a well-executed nearside neck shot and the first half ended with Coca-Cola on
top, 6-4.

Three of Coca-Colas four players (Johnston, Erskine and
Arellano) had played together for two years before the 2013 season, and the
familiarity was evident.  Tommy
Collingwood scored his first goal of the afternoon in the opening minute of the
fifth chukker.  But that was when both
defenses tightened up.  With 39 seconds
on the clock, Johnston scored for the fourth time and Coca-Cola left the field
chukker left to a commanding 10-5 advantage and one chukker left to play. 

Goti scored the first goal of the sixth chukker with Collingwood
responding form Coca-Cola with a goal, 11-6. 
Vargas and Snow each scored for the third time, but it was Coca-Cola
with the 11-8 win.

The victory will allow Coca-Cola to defend its 2012 Pennell
Cup title against an impressive Villa Del Lago foursome on Sunday afternoon at
3pm on the International Polo Club stadium field.


Coca-Cola team captain Gillian Johnston set the pace with
four goals.  Julio Arellano scored three
times and Sugar Erskine and Tommy Collingwood each scored a pair of goals.  Victor Vargas and Adam Snow scored three
goals apiece for Lechuza Caracas.  Tomas
Goti added two goals in a losing effort.