Entering Saturday’s Gold Cup game with an 0-2 record, Dos Lunas (James Fewster, Paul S. de Vicuña, Facundo Sola and Martin Podesta) desperately needed a win against the powerful Ayala polo team (Iñigo Zobel, Peque Gonzalez, Facundo Pieres and Santiago Laborde) at Spain’s Santa Maria Polo Club, but after the first half, it didn’t look like it was going to turn out that way.
Dos Lunas took a 2-0 first chukker lead, and managed to remain in front after two periods of play, 4-3 with Martin Iturraspe replacing Pascual S. de Vicuña.in the first period.
Five unanswered goals from Ayala in the third chukker had Dos Lunes trailing 8-4 at the end of the first half, and it looked like it was all over for them. Dos Lunas cut the Ayala lead to two goals, 9-7 in the fourth.
Ayala outscored Dos Lunas 2-1 in the fifth and entered the sixth chukker on top of an 11-8 score.
A herculean effort by the dos Lunas offense put four goals on the scoreboard in the final chukker in regulation play while holding Ayala to a single score. All even at 12-12, the teams would remount before taking the field in a sudden-death overtime chukker.
The momentum remained with Dos Lunas in the extra period as Facundo Sola scored the winning goal for the 13-2 victory.
The win ties Dos Lunas with La Indiana (Michael Bickford, Juan Martin Zavaleta, Tincho Merlos and Byron Watson) and Dubai (Rashid Albwardy, Martin Valent, Pablo MacDonough and Josh Cork) with 1-2 records and one game remaining for each of them.
On Monday, August 21st, La Indiana will attempt to slow down an undefeated Lechuza team (Victor Vargas, Pelon Stirling, Juan Martín Nero and Will Harper). On Wednesday, two games are scheduled to take place with Ayala facing Lechuza while Dos Lunas takes on Dubai.
Gold Cup semifinal action is slated to take place on Friday, August 25th, with the tournament final set for Sunday, August 27th.