Dos Lunas and MB Polo Victorious on Opening Day of Copa de Plata
The opening day of the 2019 Copa de Plata at Santa Maria Polo Club featured a 10-8 victory for MB Polo over La Indiana, while Dos Lunas narrowly defeated Bardon 11-9, building on their recent victory in the Copa de Bronce.
The first game of the tournament displayed a dynamic MB Polo offense that outshot La Indiana 18-8, using their additional scoring chances to overcome the accurate 75% shooting from La Indiana. Pablo MacDonough led the way with six goals, but a balanced offense late in the game resulted in MB Polo breaking the tie in the 5th chukka to finish with the two-goal victory. The two teams traded goals throughout the first half as La Indiana converted all three shots and their lone penalty attempt over the first two chukkas, but a three-goal second chukka from Pablo MacDonough tied the score at 4-4. Patron HRH Prince Mateen Bolkiah inched MB Polo into the lead before the end of the half with a 5-4 advantage.
Gonzalito Pieres brought La Indiana back into a tie by continuing to shoot accurately towards goal despite their limited chances and being outshot 10-5. La Indiana’s defence was strong to begin the second half, keeping Dos Lunas off the scoreboard in the fourth chukka, but MB Polo found their stride in the fifth chukka. A goal each from MacDonough, Tomas Panelo and Tommy Beresford pushed MB polo into the slim one-goal lead, with MacDonough and Panelo continuing the momentum into the final chukka, adding one more goal each to secure the 10-8 victory.
The second match of the day saw Dos Lunas lead from the opening throw-in with their one goal on handicap as they found themselves ahead on the scoreboard at the end of each chukka. After missing their first three shots of the game, Bardon used accurate shooting the rest of the way to challenge Dos Lunas in the final chukkas, but second half foul trouble resulted in three penalty goals in favour of Dos Lunas in the victory. Converting four of their first five shots in the game, Dos Lunas was led on the offensive end by their #1 and #2 players Luis Domecq and Pascual Sainz de Vicuna, who contributed two goals each to give Dos Lunas the four-goal lead. Bardon cut the deficit to three by the end of the first half after a Penalty 2 conversion from Matias Machado, but the momentum remained with Dos Lunas leading into the second half.
The pace slowed during the rest of the game due to foul trouble for both teams as a combined 15 fouls were committed over the final three chukkas. Trading penalty goals each, Dos Lunas’ Joaquin Pittaluga converted two penalty 3 conversions, while Bardon’s Machado responded with penalty 2 conversions resulting in a two-goal advantage for Dos Lunas. Quiet earlier in the game, Rodrigo Andrade exploded for two goals in the fifth chukka, pulling Bardon within one goal behind their accurate 75% shooting in the final five chukkas of the game. However, Bardon’s indiscipline in the final chukka, committing four fouls, allowed Dos Lunas to convert their fourth penalty of the game and claim the 11-9 victory.