Sports Corner
Newington, Hall Soccer Have Tight Pre-Season Match
NEWINGTON - Newington and Hall High School traded goals in pre-season soccer action marked by tight defending broken only by Connor Buckley’s long-range effort and, later, a Warriors penalty kick.

       Newington Head Coach Jeff Brunetti has always credited his team’s success in recent seasons to, among other things, its defensive consistency, and the back four held it down, collecting Warrior through-ball attempts, drawing offside calls and blocking shots in the penalty area.

       And then there was goalkeeper Zack Harmon, who came through for Newington a few times, including a long range rocket that came off of a Hall free kick several yards outside the penalty area. Holding a 1-0 lead, Harmon got his fingertips to the high shot, which deflected just high enough to ring the crossbar before going out of bounds behind the net.

       But it was the Warriors goalkeeper who wasn’t as fortunate late in the first half. Newington got its long-range effort from Buckley after a desperate clearing attempt, following a near breakaway goal, by the Hall defense put the ball at the senior’s feet several yards outside the penalty area.

       The shot was high enough to elude the keeper’s reach, but low enough to find its way into the top right corner for the 1-0 Newington lead.

       But Hall would have its chances to draw even. One came from a through-ball that found a Warrior striker alone near Newington’s left post. The shooting angle wasn’t great, but it was a point-blank opportunity that Harmon gobbled up.

       His defense would step up for him later, when a Hall cross from the right found a striker in the box with time, room, and what appeared to be an opening to shoot. But a Newington defender stepped in to block the attempt.

       It was a second half foul, during a Warriors corner kick, that would give Hall its best chance of the match. The referee signaled to the penalty spot and Hall capitalized, burying the shot low to Harmon’s right to make it 1-1.