By Alex Webbe
La Aguada/ Las Monjitas (Ignacio Toccalino, Pite Merlos, Eduardo N. Astrada Jr. and Alejandro Novillo Astrada) played the 39-goal Ellerstina polo team (Polito Pieres, Nico Pieres, Gonzalito Pieres and Facundo Pieres) evenly for the first two chukkers of Sunday afternoon’s Tortugas Open match, but an 11-1 run by the black-shirted Pieres clan in the third and fourth chukkers posted them to ten goal lead that La Aguada/Las Monjitas could never recover.
The two teams traded goals in the opening chukker, 3-3, and again in the second period, for a 6-6 tie.
Third chukker action saw Ellerstina outscore La Aguada/Las Monjitas, 6-1 and take a healthy 12-7 lead. Five more fourth chukker goals went unanswered as Ellerstina bolted in front by ten goals, 17-7.
La Aguada/Las Monjitas bounced back in the fifth chukker, scoring four times while holding Ellerstina to a single goal, but the damage had already been done. In spite of outscoring Ellerstina in fifth period play, Ellerstina continued to lead in an 18-11 match.
Defenses tightened in the sixth period with La Aguada/Las Monjitas accounting for the only score in the chukker. There was one chukker left in regulation play and Ellerstina continued to lead, 18-12.
Polito Pieres and Facundo Pieres accounted for the final two goals of the game in seventh chukker action while La Aguada/Las Monjitas was unable to mount an effective attack in the final chukker. The victory was the first Tortugas Open win for Ellerstina in their debut while La Aguada/Las Monjitas suffered their second defeat in as many games and eliminated them from the tournament.
Facundo Pieres led a balanced Ellerstina attack with eight goals (two on penalty shots). Gonzalito Pieres added five goals; Polito Pieres scored four times; and Nico Pieres was credited with three goals for the win. Ignacio Toccalino scored three of his team-high seven goals on penalty conversions. Eduardo Novillo Astrada and Pite Merlos scored two goals each with Alejandro Novillo Astrada picking up a single goal in the loss.
Tortugas Open competition will continue on Monday, October 5 at 3:30pm with the defending championship La Dolfina (Adolfo Cambiaso, Pelon Stirling, Pablo MacDonough and Juan Martin Nero) making their 2015 high-goal debut against Chapaleufú (Pepe Heguy, Nachi Heguy, Bautista Heguy and Eduardo Heguy).
(Photo courtesy of the AAP and Matías Callejo)