Mon

Aug

10

NATIONAL EIGHT GOAL

Beverly Polo Club

5:30 PM ET

Altair

Foxlease/Sugarland Farms

Wed

Aug

12

CENTRAL CIRCUIT CONSTITUTION CUP - CHICAGO INVITATIONAL

Las Brisas Polo Club

6:00 PM ET

Oak Brook Polo

G-Squared

Wed

Aug

12

CENTRAL CIRCUIT CONSTITUTION CUP - CHICAGO INVITATIONAL

Las Brisas Polo Club

6:00 PM ET

Las Brisas

Passion For Polo (PFP)

Fri

Aug

14

CENTRAL CIRCUIT CONSTITUTION CUP - CHICAGO INVITATIONAL

Las Brisas Polo Club - f

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Mon

Aug

10

NATIONAL EIGHT GOAL

Beverly Polo Club

5:30 PM ET

Altair

Foxlease/Sugarland Farms

Wed

Aug

12

CENTRAL CIRCUIT CONSTITUTION CUP - CHICAGO INVITATIONAL

Las Brisas Polo Club

6:00 PM ET

Oak Brook Polo

G-Squared

Wed

Aug

12

CENTRAL CIRCUIT CONSTITUTION CUP - CHICAGO INVITATIONAL

Las Brisas Polo Club

6:00 PM ET

Las Brisas

Passion For Polo (PFP)

Fri

Aug

14

CENTRAL CIRCUIT CONSTITUTION CUP - CHICAGO INVITATIONAL

Las Brisas Polo Club - f

Time TBA

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NEWS

PILOT CLAIMS SECOND OVERTIME VICTORY OVER TONKAWA IN SUNDAY'S FEATURE MATCH

Mar 02, 2020 5:59 PM

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Pilot claims the first Sunday title of the 2020 USPA Gold Cup®. ©Alex Pacheco
Pilot claims the first Sunday title of the 2020 USPA Gold Cup®.

Story Courtesy of International Polo Club Palm Beach.

For the second time in just three weeks, Pilot and Tonkawa needed overtime to determine the winner, this time in the USPA Gold Cup®, with Pilot once again emerging as the victor, claiming the 13-12 victory on the U.S. Polo Assn. Field 1 at the International Polo Club Palm Beach in Wellington, Florida.

A déjà vu moment between Pilot and Tonkawa saw them evenly matched in nearly every aspect of the game, treating spectators to a thrilling feature match of the week. Tonkawa was able to hold the advantage by playing a disciplined defense that kept Facundo Pieres off the penalty line, where he had been shooting an impressive ninety percent entering the game. Keeping pace behind their 10-goal duo of Facundo and Gonzalito Pieres, who combined for all 13 goals, Pilot received their first penalty attempt in the sixth chukker, using the opportunity to send the game into overtime and ultimately capture the exciting 13-12 victory.

10-goalers, Sapo Caset of Tonkawa and Facundo Pieres of Pilot battle for possession of the ball on the U.S. Polo Assn. Field 1. ©Alex Pacheco
10-goalers, Sapo Caset of Tonkawa and Facundo Pieres of Pilot battle for possession of the ball on the U.S. Polo Assn. Field 1.

A lightning quick pace was set in the first chukker as the Pieres brothers contributed a field goal each, while a penalty two conversion from Sapo Caset left Tonkawa trailing by one. Doubling up Tonkawa on the scoreboard in the second chukker, Pilot’s attack in open play was successfully early to push the lead to 4-2, but Tonkawa responded with an organized attack of their own. Despite three missed attempts at goal, Tonkawa continued to pressure Pilot, finishing the chukker on Ignacio Toccalino’s first goal to bring the game back into a 4-4 tie. Conceding zero penalty attempts to Pilot, Tonkawa’s third Penalty 2 conversion of the game gave them their first lead, which they held on to at the completion of the first half leading into the divot stomp on the U.S. Polo Assn. Field 1.

Back-and-forth action highlighted the beginning of the second half, resulting in three goals from each team without the whistle blown once for a foul. Facundo and Gonzalito Pieres continued to account for all of Pilot’s goals, while Tonkawa received two goals from Toccalino, along with Jeff Hildebrand’s first score of the tournament to push Tonkawa back ahead by one goal. Increasing their pressure on the Tonkawa defense, Pilot forced them into four fouls, but were unable to take advantage of the extra possessions, watching their deficit grow to two for the first time in the game entering the final chukker. Caset’s seventh goal of the game opened the scoring in the final chukker, leaving Tonkawa ahead by three with just minutes left in the game, but Pilot quickly responded with a run of penalty goals. After consecutive penalty goals from Gonzalito Pieres brought the deficit to one, an attack downfield resulted in a penalty one, tying the score and once again sending the battle between Pilot and Tonkawa into overtime. Just seconds into the extra chukker, Facundo Pieres stole the knock-in and found the goal, securing the thrilling 13-12 victory for Pilot and also claiming Sunday’s Most Valuable Player honors. The horse he scored the winning goal on, Open Chistosa, was named the match’s Best Playing Pony.

Click here to learn more about the GAUNTLET OF POLO®.

Tonkawa's Matias Gonzalez controls the ball while Pilot's Lucas Escobar races in pursuit. ©Alex Pacheco
Tonkawa's Matias Gonzalez controls the ball while Pilot's Lucas Escobar races in pursuit.

*Matias Gonzalez is a member of Team USPA. The mission of Team USPA is to improve the sport of polo in the United States by developing the talent/skills of young American players through mentored training and playing opportunities, ultimately leading to a pool of higher-rated American players.

All Photos Courtesy of ©Alex Pacheco.

USPA

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