Valiente I/Tonkawa earns finals berth with 11-7 win
By Alex Webbe
Houston businessman and polo player Jeff Hildebrand made
his 20-goal debut at the International Polo Club in Wellington Thursday morning
with his Valiente I/Tonkawa team as they downed Villa Del Lago 11-7 in the
first semifinal of the Iglehart Cup.
With little ongoing rhythm to it, the choppy game produced 12 penalty
goals and had Argentine 8-goaler Santiago Toccalino scoring ten of his teamâ€™s
11 goals in a winning effort.
The two teams battled through a scoreless six minutes of
play before Toccalino made good on his first penalty shot of the day for a 1-0 Valiente
I/Tonkawa leas. A brilliant run down the
field by Villa Del Lagoâ€™s Pelon Escapite tied it up at 1-1 with 11 seconds on
Both defenses exerted themselves in the second period
with Escapite converting a penalty shot for a brief 2-1 lead halfway through
the chukker. Two minutes later,
Toccalino tied it up on a penalty conversion, 2-2, to end the period.
Valiente I/Tonkawa took control early and scored the
first three goals of the third chukker, 5-2, with Toccalino adding two more
penalty goals and team captain Hildebrand scoring once from the field. Halfway through the period, Escapite scored
for Villa Del Lago on another penalty shot, and the 5-3 held until the horn
sounded the end of the first half f play.
Villa Del Lago tightened up the game in the fourth
chukker, capitalizing on goals from Augustin Obregon and Escapite while
limiting Valiente I/Tonkawa to a single goal from the field from Toccalino but
continued to trail, 6-5.
Valiente I/Tonkawa extended their lead in the fifth on a
pair of goals from Toccalino, including a beautifully placed 85 yard shot
through the goal posts. Villa Del Lago
picked up a single penalty goal from Escapite, falling behind, 8-6.
Toccalino added two more penalty conversions in the sixth
chukker and added a goal from the field. Escapite scored his sixth goal of the
game but fell in the final period, 11-7.
Toccalino led all scoring with ten goals for Valiente
I/Tonkawa. Hildebrand scored a goal from
the field in the win.
Escapite led the Villa Del Lago Effort with six
goals. Obregon added a goal in the loss.