La Dolfina Polo Ranch and Ellerstina Victorious on Day 5 of Hurlingham Open
The fifth day of play in the 2018 Hurlingham Open featured two strong offensive performances with La Dolfina Polo Ranch capturing their first win of the tournament with the 17-10 victory over La Ensenada, while Ellerstina defeated Alegria-La Irenita 23-10 at Hurlingham Polo Club.
The opening game of the day proved to be a crucial game for La Dolfina Polo Ranch as they came into the game with two losses and were facing a resurgent La Ensenada team. After an even first chukka that saw both teams score two goals, seven fouls from La Ensenada in the second chukka gave La Dolfina Polo Ranch the opportunities they needed to grab a three-goal advantage behind the offensive duo of Guillermo Terrera and Diego Cavanagh. La Dolfina Polo Ranch were also able to slow Juan Britos who had averaged seven goals per game before the contest and finished with four goals. The two teams traded goals for the remainder of the half, with La Dolfina Polo Ranch maintaining their three-goal lead due to perfect 4 for 4 shooting from the penalty line.
The fifth chukka was decisive in the outcome of the game with Cavanagh scoring three consecutive goals to open the half and pushing his team’s lead to six. The offensive outburst for La Dolfina Polo Ranch continued from there as they scored six goals over the fifth and sixth chukkas while holding La Ensenada to just one. The interplay between Cavanagh and Terrera was a constant offensive threat throughout the game and continually produced shot attempts at goal, with Julian de Lusarreta and Ignatius Du Plessis guarding against the counter attack. Holding an eight-goal lead La Dolfina Polo Ranch cruised through the final chukka to complete the 17-10 victory and claim their first win of the tournament.
The second game of the day saw Ellerstina continue their dominant play with their second straight double-digit victory to begin the Hurlingham Open. From the opening throw-in, Ellerstina jumped on every loose ball to control play as they quickly raced out to a 6-0 lead on perfect 3 for 3 shooting from the field and penalty line. The slow start for Alegria-La Irenita provided a sense of urgency with Matias MacDonough converting two penalty attempts, along with a field goal from Juan Gris Zavaleta to cut the deficit in half. The run from Alegria-La Irenita was countered by three goals from Ellerstina as they extended their lead back to six but were once again unable to extend the lead further as Alegria-La Irenita produced some quick offense to begin the third chukka. Back-to-back goals from Clemente Zavaleta led to a 3-0 third chukka in favour of Alegria-La Irenita as the potent Ellerstina offense was held off the scoresheet. Before the end of the half, Gonzalito Pieres broke away for two runs to give Ellerstina a five-goal lead, with Alegria-La Irenita playing Ellerstina even after the opening chukka.
The second half displayed the strengths of Ellerstina as they held Alegria La-Irenita to just one shot in the fifth and sixth chukkas, while scoring nine field goals as part of a 13-1 run in the second half. The defense of Alegria-La Irenita was unable to contain the speed of Ellerstina with Polito, Gonzalito and Facundo Pieres all scoring at least three goals during the run. Despite shooting an effective 6 for 7 from the field, Alegria-La Irenita was unable to slow the Ellerstina attack that shot at goal 25 times while shooting a perfect 7 for 7 from the field in the convincing 23-10 victory.