La Dolfina and Las Monjitas Set Up Exciting Final Four in Hurlingham Open
The day after Ellerstina and La Aguada improved to 3-0 in the 2018 Hurlingham Open, La Dolfina and Las Monjitas followed suit as victories for both teams left them undefeated, setting up an exciting final weekend of group play at Hurlingham Polo Club. La Dolfina defeated La Canada Angiocor-DRF 22-6 in the first game of the day, while Las Monjitas defeated La Albertina 13-8.
In the opening game, La Dolfina displayed their immense talent, scoring the first 11 goals of the game, with Adolfo Cambiaso and Pablo MacDonough accounting for 9 of the 11 goals during the run. The key to La Dolfina’s run was their team defense, as they held La Canada to zero shots through the opening three chukkas, with Juan Martin Nero leading the way with effective backhands. Compounded by seven fouls in the opening three chukkas, La Canada were unable to match the speed of La Dolfina, as La Dolfina added five penalty goals to open the double-digit lead. Jared Zenni added a goal from the penalty line and the field to get his team on the scoresheet in the fourth chukka, but La Canada trailed by 10 with just three chukkas remaining.
Despite having a large lead, La Dolfina kept the pressure on to begin the second half, winning the fifth chukka 5-0 by taking advantage of four La Canada fouls. MacDonough extended his game leading goal total to seven, with Nero continuing to facilitate from the back of the game. Looking to build the momentum into next weekend’s game against Las Monjitas, La Dolfina finished a perfect 3 for 3 from the field and penalty line over the final two chukkas to complete the dominant 22-6 victory and remain undefeated in the Triple Crown.
A win in Sunday’s game against La Albertina would provide Las Monjitas with an opportunity to face La Dolfina, with the winner claiming a spot in the Hurlingham Open final. A game of runs saw strong stretches from both teams with Facundo Sola leading his Las Monjitas team early in the game, contributing to his team’s first four goals, scoring two and assisting on two to help Las Monjitas build an early lead. The other key to Las Monjitas’ early success was in their ability to avoid fouling, as they committed zero fouls over the opening three chukkas, while La Albertina committed six fouls over the same period. Trailing by four, La Albertina changed the momentum of the game in the fourth chukka, outscoring Las Monjitas 4-0 to bring the game back into a tie thanks to three goals from Ignacio Toccalino, including receiving a penalty 1 at the end of the chukka to create a tense game leading into the second half.
Las Monjitas stepped up their defensive effort to begin the second half, holding La Albertina to zero shots in the fourth and fifth chukkas due to Santiago Toccalino and Hilario Ulloa being active in the middle of the field, hitting quick backhands to reverse play. Despite holding La Albertina off the scoresheet, Las Monjitas produced inaccurate shooting, including a stretch of 1 for 9 shooting to keep La Albertina within reach. After a penalty 2 conversion for Caset and field goal for Sola increased Las Monjitas’ lead to five, La Albertina was unable to keep pace and ran out of time to mount another comeback, falling to Las Monjitas 13-8.