RS Murus Sanctus Survives Challenge From La Dolfina Brava Polo Team to Remain Undefeated
After rain delayed the 128th Abierto Argentino de Polo, play resumed on Wednesday at Palermo with La Natividad defeating Alegria Standard Wealth 20-9. In one of the matches of the tournament, RS Murus Sanctus survived a tough challenge from La Dolfina Brava Polo Team to claim the 13-12 overtime victory and remain undefeated.
Finding the form that ultimately won them the Hurlingham Open, La Natividad produced an impressive showing against Alegria Standard Wealth, pulling away in the second half behind the 12-goal performance from Camilo Castagnola. Converting six of his eight penalty attempts, Camilo Castagnola combined with brother Bartolome Castagnola to account for 16 of La Natividad’s 20 goals. Outshooting Alegria Standard Wealth 20-5 in the second half, La Natividad ran away with the double-digit win.
Quickly asserting his offense on the game, Camilo Castagnola converted a Penalty 4 to open the scoring and quickly added a field goal to give La Natividad the 2-0 advantage. Despite two more penalty conversions from Castagnola in the second chukka, Alegria Standard Wealth gained the momentum thanks to the duo of Tomas Garcia del Rio and Agustin Merlos. Three field goals from Garcia del Rio brought Alegria Standard Wealth within one goal, trailing 6-5, but before the end of the half, La Natividad surged ahead. Producing a dominant fourth chukka, La Natividad scored five goals, all coming from the Castagnola brothers to create a six-goal lead and change the dynamic of the match.
Scoring just one minute into the second half, Camilo Castagnola’s eighth goal ended a string of six unanswered goals for La Natividad as Alegria Standard Wealth searched for a response. Converting both opportunities around goal, Merlos provided a brief answer, yet La Natividad began their second stretch of six consecutive goals, dominating possession to put the game out of reach. Castagnola completed his impressive performance with his twelfth goal, while Ignatius Du Plessis contributed two tallies to add his name to the scoresheet. With the victory, La Natividad set up an opportunity to challenge for a place in the final in their remaining group game.
A crucial match between RS Murus Sanctus and La Dolfina Brava Polo Team would decide the top team of Zone B and despite RS Murus Sanctus entering the game with eight more goals on handicap, La Dolfina Brava Polo Team took the game into overtime. All eight players found the scoresheet with at least two goals, displaying the high level of play as little separated the two teams. La Dolfina Brava Polo Team finished an impressive 60% shooting from the field, but the additional chances for RS Murus Sanctus including the overtime winning goal for Facundo Sola proved to be the difference in the 13-12 overtime win.
A stunning start to the game resulted in La Dolfina Brava Polo Team scoring three goals in the first two minutes and 20 seconds, including a Penalty 2 from Cambiaso to hold an early 3-0 lead. Alejo Taranco’s second goal of the chukka gave his team the 4-1 advantage, leaving RS Murus Sanctus to fight back from the early deficit. Pulling back within one goal by the end of the second chukka, RS Murus Sanctus balanced attack resulted in one goal from all four players. Accurate shooting kept RS Murus Sanctus in the first half as they were outshot by La Dolfina Brava Polo Team, but it was Guillermo Terrera’s two goals to finish the half that left RS Murus Sanctus facing a two-goal deficit at halftime.
A difficult start to the second half for RS Murus Sanctus began with an own goal from Juan Martin Nero, but the momentum abruptly switched for the first time in the game. Quickly getting the goal back, Nero began a run of four straight goals, ending with Facundo Sola giving RS Murus Sanctus their first lead of the game at 10-9. Exchanging goals into the eighth chukka, Poroto Cambiaso’s third penalty goal left La Dolfina Brava Polo Team just minutes from victory, but Pablo Mac Donough sent the game into overtime with a crucial field goal. Winning the throw-in, RS Murus Sanctus conceded possession but quickly regained it and a pass from Mac Donough sent Sola to goal where he sent the ball through the goal and secured the 13-12 overtime victory.