By Alex Webbe
Tonkawa (Jeff Hildebrand, Sapo Caset, Costi Caset and Facundo Obregon) became the first Ylvisaker Cup semi-finalist on the strength of their 8-6 win over Valiente I (Bob Jornayvaz, Felipe Viana, Adolfo Cambiaso and Toro Ruiz) Saturday afternoon on the Tonkawa home field.
Valiente I got on the scoreboard first, scoring on a neck-shot from Felipe Viana in the opening two minutes of the game, 1-0. Two minutes later 10-goaler Sapo Caset tied it at 1-1 with a 60-yard penalty conversion. Toro Ruiz gave the lead back to Valiente, scoring in the final minute of the chukker tor a 2-1 Valiente advantage.
Defensive pressure loomed over both teams in the second period. Single 30-yard penalty goals were converted by both Caset and Valiente 10-goaler Adolfo Cambiaso. Valiente remained in control of the 3-2 lead.
Close checking and disciplined defenses kept the scoring in the third period to a minimum. Caset found himself on the scoring end of a backhand pass from Facundo Obregon with just three minutes in the chukker for the only score. The goal ended the scoring in the first half and had the game deadlocked at 3-3.
Caset’s fourth goal of the game came on a 30-yard penalty conversion at the 6:13 mark of the fourth chukker, giving Tonkawa their first lead of the game, 4-3. Three minutes later Felipe Viana leveled the score at 4-4 with the final goal of the chukker.
Viana added another goal two minutes into the fifth period followed by a goal from teammate Ruiz. With less than four minutes left in the period, Valiente held the lead, 6-4. A blast by Caset came at the 1:40 mark, bringing Tonkawa to within a goal of the lead, 6-5. A drive from the ensuing throw-in found the ball in the Valiente goal area when Tonkawa team captain Jeff Hildebrand tapped it through for a score to tie the game, once again, 6-6.
A sixth chukker goal from Costi Caset came with just over five minutes left in regulation time, putting Tonkawa in front, 7-6. Obregon sealed Valiente’s fate with a well-placed nearside backhander through the goalposts. There was plenty of time for a comeback, with over four minutes on the clock, but the Tonkawa defense held on for the 8-6 win and a berth in Wednesday’s semifinals.
Apo Caset led the field in scoring with five goals (three on penalty shots). Obregon, Costi Caset and Hildebrand each added a goal for the win. Viana scored a team-high three goals for Valiente. Ruiz added two goals and Cambiaso was credited with one goal on a 40-yard penalty shot.
Ylvisaker Cup play is scheduled to continue on Sunday, February 12th beginning with a 10am game between Orchard Hill (Steve Van Andel, Lucas Criado, Facundo Pieres and Nico Escobar) and Horseware (Matt Coppola, Juan Martin Obregon, Mariano Gracida and Tommy Collingwood). At noon, Postage Stamp Farm (Annabelle Gundlach, Brandon Phillips, Mariano Aguerre and Kris Kampsen) will battle Villa del Lago (Jim Zenni, Agustin Obregon, Hilario Ulloa and Carlucho Arellano) with Coca-Cola (Gillian Johnston, Julian de Lusarreta, Julio Arellano and Del Walton) and Valiente II (Todd Thurston, Matias Torres Zavaleta, Diego Cavanagh and Joaquin Panelo) meeting at 3pm on the International Polo Club’s stadium field.
To see all the teams and results click here
Photos by Alex Pacheco