by U.S. Polo Correspondent Alex Webbe

Coming off of an opening round Joe Barry Memorial Cup five goal loss to Orchard Hill, the Audi polo team was determined to redeem itself against the 2012 defending championship Coca-Cola foursome, and in Wednesday’s 11 am game they did just that, scoring a decisive 17-11 win. “We weren’t ready for the opener,” said Audi 8-goaler Nic Roldan. “Nico (Pieres) just arrived four days earlier and Marc (Ganzi) just got back from skiing in Aspen (where he injured his knee); the horses were heavy; out teamplay wasn’t in sync,” he added. “Nothing was working for us.”

Coca-Cola scored the first two goals of the game on a penalty shot from Julio Arellano and a goal from the field from Tommy Collingwood to lead, 2-0. Audi answered back with three consecutive goals (two from Nic Roldan and one from Nico Pieres) for a 3-2 edge. Coca-Cola team captain Gillian Johnston tied it up with a goal in the final seconds of the first chukker, 3-3. Audi took control in the second period as they outscored Coca-Cola 5-1. Pieres and Roldan scored two goals apiece and Marc Ganzi added a goal from the field as they left the field at the end of the chukker with a comfortable 8-4 advantage. Two penalty conversions from Arellano were countered by a single goal from Ganzi, and Coca-Cola trailed at the end of the first half, 9-6. The teams exchanged goals in the fourth chukker, each scoring three times. Audi continued to hold its three goal lead, 12-9. Coca-Cola cut the Audi lead to two goals in the fifth. Arellano converted two penalty shots for goals. Roldan scored once from the field. Audi’s lead had eroded to two goals, 13-11.

Audi owned the final period of play and Roldan was the star. Roldan three times from the field and added a penalty shot for a goal while the Audi defense shut out the Coca-Cola attack for the final 17-11 victory. Audi’s Nic Roldan led all scoring with eleven goals on the day, three on penalty shots. Nico Pieres scored three times; Marc Ganzi was credited with two goals; and Carlitos Gracida added a goal in the win. Coca-Cola’s Julio Arellano registered six goals, all on penalty shots. Tommy Collingwood and Sugar Erskine scored two goals apiece and Gillian Johnston scored once in a losing effort. Audi improved its record to 1-1 while Coca-Cola is now 0-2.

GOOSE CREEK 10, ERG 9
Kris Kampsen scored two goals in the final chukker to lift the Goose Creek team to a 10-9 victory over a scrappy ERG squad in the second tournament game of the day. First chukker goals from ERG’s Paco de Narvaez and Jeff Blake were offset by penalty goals from Tommy Biddle and Kris Kampsen for an early 2-2 deadlock. Goals were no easier to come by in the second period, but both teams managed to pick up a pair with de Narvaez and Blake scoring single goals that were answered by single goals from Kampsen and Biddle for another tie, 4-4. Blocked shots, missed passes and stubborn defenses kept the teams all even at the end of the first half at 6-6. Once again it was de Narvaez and Blake with single goals for ERG while Goose Creek got scores from Kampsen and Luis Escobar.

Goose Creek kept ERG off of the scoreboard at the start of the second half, but managed only a single penalty goal (Kampsen) as they moved ahead, 7-6, after four chukkers. A pair of goals from de Narvaez tied it at 7-7 and then moved ERG past Goose Creek in the fifth, 8-7. Kampsen kept it all even with another penalty conversion for a goal, 8-8.

Two goals from Kampsen trumped a single goal from de Narvaez in the final chukker as Goose Creek rode off with the 10-9 win. Kris Kampsen led the Goose Creek attack with seven goals, three on penalty shots. Both of Tommy Biddle’s goals came on penalty conversions and Luis Escobar added a goal in the win. Paco de Narvaez set the pace for ERG with five goals. Jeff Blake was credited with three goals and Wesley Bryan (substituting for an injured Scott Wood at the end of the fourth chukker) added a goal in the loss. Goose Creek remains undefeated with a 2-0 record. ERG sits at 1-1.

CRAB ORCHARD 9, FARAWAY 3
In the biggest blowout of the season, Crab Orchard trampled Faraway 9-3 in a game in which Faraway didn’t get on the scoreboard until the fifth chukker. Neither team was impressive in the opening chukker of lay, with Crab Orchard’s Matias Magrini scoring the only goal of the chukker after the first six minutes of play. Crab Orchard took the early lead, 1-0.

For the duration of the first, however, it was all Crab Orchard. Seven goals over the course of the second and third chukkers went unanswered as Crab Orchard built up a one-sided 8-0 lead. Another goal by Magrini in the fourth period had Crab Orchard riding a nine goal lead, 9-0. Faraway finally managed to shut down the Crab orchard attack in the final two chukkers of the game, but it was a case of too little, too late. A single goal from Juan Monteverde in the fifth chukker and a pair of goals from Santiago Chavanne in the sixth ended the match, with Crab Orchard registering an impressive 9-3 win.

The victory boosts Crab Orchard’s record to 1-1 while Faraway falls to 0-2. Five goals from Matias Magrini (two on penalty shots) led the scoring on the day for Crab orchard. Mariano Aguerre scored three times (once by penalty) and Felipe Viana scored once in the win. Santiago Chavanne scored twice for Faraway with teammate Juan Monteverde adding a single goal in the loss.