Stirling Performance Nets Lucchese Finals Berth

Stirling Performance Nets Lucchese Finals Berth

Alex Webbe

Wins by Lucchese and Coca-Cola Wednesday afternoon in the
2012 Joe Barry Memorial Cup at the International Polo Club in Wellington set
the stage for Sunday’s finals between the two 20-goal teams, while Audi’s
convincing victory over Heathcote established the finals of the bobby Barry
Cup, the tournament’s subsidiary competition.

Riding onto the field with the tournament’s newest
10-goal player, David “Pelon” Stirling (the Handicap Committee of the United
States Polo Association just elevated Stirling to the revered highest handicap
in the game), Lucchese ran up a 10-5 halftime score before rolling over
Valiente II, 16-10 to capture its bracket of play and qualify to enter Sunday’s
finals against Coca-Cola.

In a game that started slowly, Valiente II’s Nacho
Astrada scored the first goal of the game on a penalty conversion.  Stirling responded with a Lucchese penalty
goal just a few moments later.  With no
further scoring, a choppy first chukker ended in a 1-1 tie.

Lucchese and Valiente II battled through a hard-riding,
fast-paced second chukker that saw Valiente II take the early lead, 2-1, on
another penalty goal from Astrada.  Stirling
tied it up at 2-2 on a penalty conversion, and from that point on, Lucchese
would never trail.

Lucchese team captain John Muse scored from the field for
a 3-2 lead followed by another penalty goal from Stirling, 4-2.  Astrada roared back with a goal from the
field to trail 4-3, and Toto Collardin tied it up at 4-4.  Stirling gave Lucchese the lead at the end of
the period with is fourth penalty goal of the short-lived match.

Stirling extended the Lucchese lead to two goals in the
third with an opening penalty conversion for a 6-4 advantage.  Bob Jornayvaz broke loose for a goal in the
third before Lucchese took control of the game. 
Stirling scored four times and Santi Torres added a goal from the field
as Lucchese rode off with a 10-5 advantage. 

Toto Collardin scored the opening goal of the second half
from the field followed by a single penalty goal from Stirling,  With two chukkers left to play, Lucchese held
a five goal 11-6 lead.

Stirling converted another penalty shot for a goal and
Torres a pair of scores in the fifth while Astrada converted two penalty goals
and Julio Gracida tallied his first mark of the day.  Lucchese continued to control the game as
they carried a 14-9 lead into the final chukker of play.

Astrada scored his sixth goal of the game for Valiente II,
but Stirling converted added another penalty and Torres followed up with a goal
from the field for the 16-10 final.

Stirling led all scoring with eleven goals.  Torres scored four times and Muse added a
goal for the win.

Astrada registered six goals for Valiente II.  Collardin scored twice and Jornayvaz and
Gracida added single goals.

12, CIRCA 10

Chris Del Gatto’s Circa team made quite an impression on
the high-goal season at the International Polo Club scoring three opening wins
before falling to a determined Coca-Cola team. 
The win pits Coca-Cola (4-0) against Lucchese (4-0) in Sunday’s title

In an offense-starved opening chukker of play, Coca-Cola
9-goaler Julio Arellano scored the only goal of the period on a penalty
conversion to edge Circa 1-0.

Martin Pepa tied it up at 1-1 on a goal from the field,
but Coca-Cola team captain Gillian Johnston gave her team a 2-1 lead on a
scoring effort.

A pressing Circa attach and three penalty goals from
Hilario Ulloa had Coca-Cola trailing 4-2, but Arellano closed out the first
half with a 60-yard penalty conversion. 
Circa held a precarious 4-3 lead after the first three chukkers.

Coca-Cola got back into the game in the fourth
chukker.  Single goals from Mason Wroe,
Sugar Erskine and Arellano were countered by goals from Ulloa and Guille
Aguero.  The game was now all even at

Arellano and Wroe added goals to the Coca-Cola total to
open the fifth period with an 8-6 lead when Ulloa led the charge back for
Circa.  Two penalty conversions and a
goal from the field for Ulloa game Circa a 9-8 advantage with one chukker left
in regulation time.

Ulloaa extended the Circa lead to two goals, 10-8 as the sixth
chukker began, but Coca-Cola continued to fight back.  Arellano managed to score from a scrum-like
formation in front of the Circa goal followed by a goal from Erskine with just
over two minutes left.  The game was
deadlocked at 10-10 with time running down when a Circa foul put Arellano on
the penalty line where he converted another shot for a goal.  Arellano sealed the deal with his sixth goal
of the game and a 12-10 final score.

Circa’s Ulloa led the field with seven goals.  Pepa added two goals and Aguero scored once
in a losing effort.

Arellano accounted for six Coca-Cola goals.  Erskine added four goals and Johnston and
Wroe tallied single goals for the win.


Audi earned a berth in the finals of the 2012 Bobby Barry
Cup (a subsidiary of the Joe Barry Memorial) on the strength of a 12-5 bating
delivered to Heathcote.

Rodrigo Andrade gave Audi an early 1-0 led on a penalty
goal to open the first chukker. 
Heathcote’s Tommy Biddle scored his first goal just over two minutes
into the game followed by a beautifully arched 120 yard goal from the
field.  Lucas Lalor and Marc Ganzi closed
out the period with single goals to give Audi a 3-2 lead after the opening

Audi’s Nic Roldan and Heathcote’s Lucas Monteverde exchanged
goals in the second period.  Roldan
converted a 40-yard penalty shot while Monteverde scored from the field.  Audi continued to lead, 3-2.

Audi drove all over Heathcote in the third with Lalor
opening up the period with a goal from the field followed by three consecutive
goals from Roldan.  At the end of the
first half, Audi led by five goals, 8-3.

Defenses took to the field in the fourth with Biddle
managing the only goal of the chukker on a penalty shot. Heathcote trailed by
four goals, 8-4.

Andrade opened the fifth period with a 90-yard goal from
the field followed by a runaway goal he scored from the following throw-in for
a 10-4 lead.  Biddle scored on a neck
shot for Heathcote, but Ganzi scored the final goal of the chukker for an 11-5
Audi lead with one chukker left in the game.

With Audi holding Heathcote in check, Roldan found
himself on the receiving end of a pass from teammate Andrade.    A
beautifully executed shot from Roldan split the goal posts from over 90 yards
away for the final score in the 12-5 Audi win.

Roldan set the pace for Audi with six goals.  Ganzi, Andrade and Lalor added two goals
apiece in the victory.

Biddle scored four times for Heathcote.  Monteverde added a goal in the loss.

The win boosts Audi into the finals of the Bobby Barry
Cup at noon on Sunday, January 29 against 3-1 Valiente II (3-1).

 With the Joe Barry
Memorial Cup winding down, the International Polo Club will be holding a draw
Thursday evening for the record 16 teams that will be participating in the
Ylvisaker Cup.

The Ylvisaker Cup is the third of four 20-goal
tournaments that precede the 26-goal competition that include the C.V. Whitney
Cup, the USPA Piaget Gold Cup and the Nespresso U.S. Open Championship, North
America’s Triple Crown of polo.