Several area high school soccer teams had their first opportunity to test their skills against teams in other divisions, as well as raise money to help fellow athletes who may get hurt during the season.
On Thursday evening, eight teams from the East Bay area met at Tiverton High School where they were paired up for exhibition scrimmages for the Rhode Island Injury Fund Tournament. Each game consisted of two, 20 minute periods, an abbreviated version of the 60 minute games played in regulation.
Playing under the lights, the Barrington Eagles, a Division One team, faced Division Three Tiverton Tigers in a match-up that was more even than the divisions would suggest.
Although the Eagles doubled the shots on goal that the Tigers attempted, the Tigers proved themselves defensively, holding the score to 0-0 at the half.
Tiverton coach, Tom Murray, encouraged his players during the half-time break.
“Zero, zero at half-time says enough. Keep it up guys,” he told his team.
Early in the second half Tiverton’s Andrew Bonoan put his team ahead with a goal.
Eight of Barrington’s nine goal attempts were either blocked or missed. On the Eagles’ third scoring attempt, Tiverton’s goalkeeper was out of the net, but the ball rolled wide, right striking the post.
Barrington’s strong offense allowed them to control the ball most of the game.
With less than two minutes left to play, Barrington senior Finton Lalor, tied the score with his shot that made it past the Tigers’ goalkeeper. The game ended in a 1-1 tie.
“It’s all about getting better,” said Barrington assistant coach Johan Giraldo.
He was confident in his team’s demonstration of skills and their ability to move the ball side-to-side.
“We’re really controlling everything on the field when we manage possession,” he said of the team’s offensive.
“We have a strong team. I think we’ll be tough.”
Tiverton appeared confident going into the regular season schedule.
“I like our toughness,” Coach Murray said of the teams’ grit against the higher division team. “We did it and pushed ourselves.”
Results from the high school soccer Rhode Island Injury Fund Tournament Thursday night:
– St. Raphael ties Mt. Hope, 2-2
– East Providence def. Rogers, 4-0
– Portsmouth def. Middletown, 1-0
– Barrington ties Tiverton, 1-1