Photo Credits © Alex Pacheco
The Joe Barry Memorial Cup was won by the great Facundo PIERES Orchard Hill Team face to his cousin Polito PIERES Villa Del Lago team.
Orchard Hill wins Joe Barry Memorial Cup; Facundo Pieres scores 12 goals
The final of the 2015 20-goal Joe Barry Memorial Cup was just fast-paced, smash-mouth battle it was expected to be with Villa Del Lago (Jim Zenni, Agustin Obregon, Polito Pieres and Julian de Lusarreta) facing Orchard Hill (Steve Van Andel, Lucas Criado, Facundo Pieres and Remy Muller).
Between Orchard Hill and Villa Del Lago, they had two of the best ball control artists in the game. Orchard Hill boasted the talents of 10-goaler Facundo Pieres while Villa Del Lago saddled up with 9-goaler Polito Pieres (recently elevated to 10-goals in Argentina). The Argentine cousins were high-scoring machines that regularly carried the ball through seemingly impassable defenses to score. The question would be, “Which cousin was going to outscore the other in Sunday’s final”.
Orchard Hill’s Facundo Pieres opened the scoring with the conversion of a 60-yard penalty shot, 1-0, in the first 80 seconds of play. Julian de Lusarreta responded with a goal from the field two minutes later to tie the game at 1-1. Polito Pieres scored ona30-yard penalty shot two minutes later to give the lead to Villa Del Lago, 2-1. Facundo Pieres leveled the score at 2-2 scoring the final goal of the period with just43sweconds on the clock.
The pace continued to heat up as the second chukker got underway. De Lusarreta scored for Villa Del Lago with just 32 seconds off the clock, 3-2, followed by a 40-yard penalty goal from Polito Pieres at the 5:41 mark for a 4-2 lead. Facundo Pieres scored a goal from the field with Polito and Facundo exchanging penalty goals to close the chukker with Villa Del Lago in the lead, 5-4.
Facundo Pieres tied it at 5-5 in the opening 30 seconds of the third chukker with a beautifully-executed neck shot. Polito Pieres took the lead back for Villa Del Lago, 6-5, at the 4:17 mark. Facundo Pieres ended the chukker with consecutive penalty goals from 40-ardsand 60-yards for a 7-6 halftime lead for Orchard Hill.
The pace continued to quicken as the second half of play began. The ball moved up and down the field at breakneck speed with both Facundo and Polito giving an exhibition of ball handling on the polo field. Polito Pieres was the first to score in the fourth chukker with a tying goal, 7-7, in the opening minute of the period. A goal from the field from de Lusarreta was followed by a penalty goal from Polito Pieres as the Villa Del Lago lead grew to two goals, 9-7. Polito Pieres scored a goal from the field as Villa Del Lago continued to beat up on a stagnant Orchard Hill offense. Villa Del Lago led by three goals, 10-7, with time running out. Orchard Hill team captain Steve Van Andel scored the final goal of the chukker with just 38 seconds on the clock. Villa Del Lago rode off the field at the end of the fourth on top of a 10-8 score.
Facundo Pieres went on a tear in the fifth chukker, scoring the opening goal on a 30-yard penalty conversion in the opening seconds of play, 10-9. Facundo followed up less than a minute later with a 130-yard neck shot for a goal and then took the ensuing throw-in and raced 150-yards down the field to score the go-ahead goal, 11-10. Facundo Pieres scored his fourth consecutive goal from a melee in front of the Villa Del Lago goal12-10. Polito Pieres and Lucas Criado traded goals to end the chukker with Orchard Hill in the possession of a 13-11 advantage.
Polito Pieres cut the Orchard Hill lead down to 13-12 with a goal in the opening minute of the sixth chukker. Criado got the goal back less than two minutes later, 14-12. De Lusarreta scored to bring Vila Del Lago to within a goal of the lead, 14-13, but Orchard Hill was not going to let the game slip away from them. With 2:11 on the clock, Facundo Pieres scored the final goal of the game for the 15-13 victory.
English 6-goaler Mark Tomlinson has played against both Facundo and Polito and had some observations from the sidelines.
“Polito probably has the best stick work of all the top players”, said English internationalist Mark Tomlinson. “His close ball control and skills are phenomenal,” he added. “Facundo is a serious winner and that’s what most strikes you when you play against him,” he said. “When he needs to turn it on he can. I was fortunate enough to be on the winning Halcyon Gallery team against Facundo playing for Zacara in the 2014 British Gold Cup quarterfinals,” he said. ”It’s going to be interesting watching the winter season unfold.”
Facundo Pieres scored 12 goals in the game (five on penalty conversions) and was named MVP for his efforts. Criado was credited with two goals and Van Andel added a goal for the win. Polito Pieres scored five of his team-high nine goals on penalty shots for Villa Del Lago. De Lusarreta picked up four goals in the losing effort.
Best Paying Pony honors went to Facundo Pieres’ Shelty.
Audi takes Bobby Barry Cup, 12-10
American 8-goaler Nic Roldan scored eight goals in leading a talented Audi lineup (Marc Ganzi, Lucas Lalor, Nic Roldan and Fred Mannix) to a 12-10 win over Lechuza (Luis de Borbon, Marcos Alberdi, Juan Martin Nero and Tomas Goti) in the Bobby Barry Memorial Cup, the subsidiary of the Joe Barry Cup.
Audi took the early lead on a goal from team captain Marc Ganzi, 1-0, three minutes into the game. Tomas Goti converted a 30-yard penalty shot for a goal to tie the game at1-1. With 51 seconds on the clock, Nic Roldan converted a 40-yard penalty shot to give Audi a 2-1 advantage.
Second period play saw Goti tie it at 2-2 on a goal from the field, but Audi stormed back. Roldan added two penalty goals and Fred Mannix scored a goal from the field. At the end of two periods, Audi led, 5-2.
Two minutes into the third chukker, Argentine 10-goaler Juan Martin Nero scored a goal from the field, cutting the Audi lead back to two goals, 5-3. Roldan converted a 30-yard penalty shot for a goal a minute later and closed out the first half with a final goal that put Audi on top of a 7-3 score.
Lechuza battled back in the fourth. Nero scored the first goal of the chukker from the field, 7-4, and followed it up with a 40-yard penalty goal, 7-5. Goti connected on a nearside neck shot for a goal, cutting the Audi lead to a single goal, 7-6. Roldan countered with a 30-yard penalty shot for a goal and Mannix scored the closing goal of the period with just56seconds on the clock for a 9-6 Audi edge.
Fifth chukker goals by Nero (60-yard penalty goal) and Marcs Alberdi had Lechuza railing by a single goals once again, 9-8. Roldan scored on a cut shot from over 60-yards out as time expired. With one chukker remaining in regulation time, Audi rode off the field with a two goal lead, 10-8.
Alberdi scored his second goal of the game in the opening 30-seconds of the sixth period, 10-9. Roldan answered with a 30-yard penalty goal, 11-9. Ganzi added his second goal of the game, 12-9, as a desperate Lechuza team struggled to stay alive. Nero scored the final goal of the game with a minute on the clock, but was unable to get any closer as Audi celebrated the 12-10 win.
Roldan led all scoring with eight goals six on penalty shots), and was named MVP. . Mannix and Ganzi scored two goals apiece for the victory. Nero scored five times for Lechuza (two on penalty conversions). Goti was credited with three goals and Alberdi scored twice in the loss.
Nero’s Somnambula was named Best Playing Pony.
By Alex Webbe.
Orchard Hill VS. Villa Del Lago : 2-2; 4-5; 7-6; 8-10; 13-11; 15-13.