Trinity (Rick Paicius, David Flowers, Tim Rudy and Erik Wright) held a 4-2 halftime lead but needed an overtime chukker to score the winning goal against California Polo/Matrix (Doug Snyder, Grainger Hines, Ashton Wolf and Domingo Questel) in the Sunday afternoon finals of the 2011 Coyote Classic at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California.
Ashton Wolf gave California Polo/Matrix the early lead, scoring the opening goal of the match, but a penalty conversion from Flowers and a goal from the field from Paicius had Trinity leading, 2-1, at the end of the first chukker. Flowers extended the lead to 4-1 in the second, converting a second penalty shot for a goal and adding a goal from the field. Questel kept California Polo/Matrix in the game by scoring the closing goal of the chukker to trail 4-2 at the end of the first half.
The California Polo/Matrix defense stepped it up in the third chukker, holding Trinity scoreless for the first time while netting a goal from Wolf. Trinity continued to lead, 4-3, but California Polo/Matrix was getting stronger with each tick of the clock.
Wolf tied it at 4-4 with his third goal of the day, but Trinity responded with a go-ahead goal from the field from Wright, 5-4. With the California Polo/Matrix attack continuing to press the Trinity defense, Wolf tied it at 5-5 for the final score in regulation time.
“I thought the team played really well in the last two chukkers,” said Hines. “The teamwork was clicking and everything seemed to be going right. We got stronger and stronger as the game went on.”
After a brief recess both teams returned to the field for the sudden-death overtime. A backhander caught a streaking Wright heading for the California Polo/Matrix goal, and tap, tap, tap Wright scored the winning goal.
“We had a couple of opportunities to score the win,” offered Questel, but we just couldn’t put the ball through the goal posts.”
Flowers scored two penalty goals and a goal from the field for three on the day. Wright added two and Paicius added a goal in the win. Wolf led all players with four goals. Questel scored once in a losing effort.
“The team played well,” said Questel. “We bounced back from a 4-2 halftime score
and tied it up. We just couldn’t get that last goal,” he smiled.
KINGSCLIFFE WINS CONSOLATION ROUND-ROBIN
In a competitive round-robin consolation round in the Coyote Classic, Kingscliffe (Kendra Clark, Kate Ewart, Brad Ramsby and Santos Areolla) finished on top with a 1-0-1 record, scoring a 7-3 win over Parklane (Bill Garlock, Cameron Smith, Jared
Sheldon and Billy Ramos) and a 3-3 tie with the Toreodors (Roxy Keyfauver, Pepe
Alcaraz, Lolo Payan and Goyo Mariscal).
The Toreodors battled Parklane to a 6-6 tie in the opening two chukkers of the round-robin affair, spotting Parklane one goal by handicap before scoring four first chukker goals. Payan opened the scoring for the Toreodors with a goal from the field
followed by a Parklane goal from Smith. The Toreodors rattled off three straight goals in response with Mariscal and Alcaraz getting on the scoreboard followed by Payan’s second goal of the contest for a 4-2 lead.
The Parklane offense got on track in the second period, picking up three goals from Sheldon and another goal from Smith. The Toreodors struggled with a more aggressive Parklane defense, managing single goals from Keyfauver and Payan for
the final 6-6 score.
Parklane held the field for the ensuing two chukkers against a determined Kingscliffe foursome. Smith scored the first goal of the chukker for Parklane before Kingscliffe went into overdrive. Five Kingscliffe goals (two apiece from Ramsby and Areolla and a single goal from Ewart) were followed up by a goal from a goal from Sheldon for a 5-2 lead.
The pace slowed down a bit in the second period with Areolla and Ramsby scoring to give Kingscliffe a commanding 7-2 advantage. A final goal from Sheldon would see Kingscliffe riding off with a decisive 7-3 win.
The final two chukkers of play had the Toreodors and Kingscliffe battling to a 3-3 tie. The Toreodors spotted Kingscliffe one goal by handicap and went ahead 2-1 after the opening seven minutes of play. Two goals from Payan and a stingy defense that kept Kingscliffe from scoring bode well, but there was one last chukker to play.
Payan’s third goal of the match had the Toreodors on top of a 3-1 score when Parklane stormed back. Consecutive goals from Areolla tied it up at 3-3 when the final horn sounded.
Kingscliffe took top honors on the strength of a 1-0-1 record. The Toreodors finished in second place with one tie and one loss while Parklane came in third with an 0-2
Toreodors 3-goaler Lolo Payan led all scoring on the day with six goals. Sheldon (Parklane) and Areolla (Kingscliffe) scored five goals each.