February 24th, 2012 Add comment
Circa outlasts KIG, 12-11, in Iglehart Cup play
By Alex Webbe, US Senior Correspondent
Bash Kazi and his KIG team made an unsuccessful debut in the opening round of the 2012 Iglehart Cup Thursday afternoon at the International Polo club in Wellington, falling to a powerful Circa team, 12-11.
KIG received one goal by handicap and quickly ran the score to 3-0 on a pair of penalty goals from Tommy Biddle. Hilario Ulloa finally got Circa on the scoreboard with a penalty conversion, but a goal from the field from 7-goaler Sugar Erskine had KIG ahead, 4-1. With just over 30 seconds left in the chukker, Ulloa was on the receiving end of a pass from teammate Martin Pepa, and drove the ball through the goalposts from 70 yards out. The first chukker ended with KIG on top of a 4-2 score.
Goals from Pepa and Guille Aguero opened the second period, tying it up at 4-4. Biddle converted another penalty shot to give KIG a 5-4 advantage. With just over a minute left in the period, Ulloa scored his third goal of the game for a 5-5 tie.
Ulloa converted a penalty shot for a goal to open the third chukker and gave Circa their first lead of the game, 6-5. Two minutes later Erskine drove the ball through the Circa goalposts, and it was all even at 6-6.
Aguero picked up a loose ball and carried it 180 yards down the field for another go-ahead goal, 7-6. Erskine tied it up again, 7-7, with a goal from the field, but it would be Aguero who would score another Circa goal in the final seconds of the first half for a 7-8 lead.
A sore wrist would sideline KIG's Sugar Erskine; with former 10-goaler Mike Azzaro taking his place on the team, and the two teams went at it again.
Just fifteen seconds into the fourth chukker, Biddle evened the score at 8-8 with a 60-yard penalty shot, but that would be the end of the KIG offensive push for the next several minutes. Ulloa gave the lead back to Circa, 9-8, with a penalty goal while consecutive goals from Pepa and Aguero extended the Circa lead to three goals, 11-8. Ulloa scored his second goal of the chukker with under a minute left in the period and Circa left the field with a 12-8 advantage.
Both defenses stiffened in the fifth as the teams charged up and down the field in frustration. Azzaro got credit for the only goal in the chukker when a shot by him on goal was deflected through the goalposts by a defending player. Circa continued to lead, 12-9.
Biddle scored a goal from the field in the opening seconds of the sixth chukker, breathing a little life back into the KIG offense. About a minute later Biddle converted a penalty shot for a goal, bringing KIG to within a goal of Circa, 12-11.
KIG continued to struggle with shots at the Circa goal being deflected or going wide. Missed penalty shots finally did KIG in with Circa registering the 12-11 victory.
A smiling Bash Kazi left the field after the game thanking his teammates for the game.
"We're so lucky to have the privilege of riding out onto these manicured fields on beautifully trained horses and play this majestic game," he beamed. "There is no losing here," he added. "One team may score more goals than the other, but you can't lose. I had w wonderful time today and got rid of all of the frustrations that come with a full week of work. This is just wonderful."
Biddle led the KIG team with six goals. Erskine scored three times and Azzaro added a goal and the team received one goal by handicap.
Ulloa's six goals led the Circa attack. Aguero was credited with four goals and Pepa scored twice in the win.