GREENWICH — Jumping as high as he could with his arms in the air, Brunswick School goalie Harry Barringer batted away a shot from Choate Rosemary Hall midfielder Spencer Jimenez with his left hand, keeping Wednesday’s soccer showdown a 1-1 tie late in the second half.
Barringer’s impressive save with 1 minute, 30 seconds remaining was a pivotal play, as the Bruins escaped defeat and played the Wild Boars to a hard-fought 1-1 draw in their season-opener.
Visiting Choate Rosemary Hall had the momentum on its side the final several minutes of play, but Brunswick, which dropped a 1-0 decision to the Wild Boars a year ago, held them off. Barringer was key in doing so, making eight saves, the last of which kept the score deadlocked off Jimenez’s shot from approximately 40 yards out.
“I saw the shot coming at me and I kept backing up, I thought it might have caught some wind,” Barringer said. “I jumped and tipped it over the bar at the right time.”
Trailing 1-0, the Bruins knotted the score at 1-1 when junior defender Ben Powers scored in the 33rd minute off a corner kick. Senior midfielder Nick Boardman served his corner kick into the box and Powers rose to put a header past Choate goalie Julius Chiang Boekmann, making it 1-1.
“The boys were amped up to play,” said Brunswick coach Danny Simpson, who made his Bruins coaching debut on Wednesday. “Credit to Choate, they’re a fantastic team. But I thought our boys played with great effort. We had to work hard to get this result. I think 1-1 was a fair result for both squads and we have a lot to build on.”
“We started off well and moved the ball around really well,” Choate coach Charlie Fuentes said. “But it was just a matter of time before the Brunswick guys settled in. This was a good test for us to see where we’re at. We are not satisified with the draw, but we’re not upset by it. Definitely, we have some work to do on finishing.”
The home team gathered momentum as the game wore on, creating chances behind the aggressive play of junior forward/midfielder Dante Polvara and senior forward William Maynard. Polvara nearly gave Brunswick a 2-1 edge, but his shot from over 20 yards out banged off the left post in the 65th minute.
The Bruins held a 12-9 shots-on-goal advantage on the Wild Boars (1-0-1). They outshot the visitors 6-2 in the opening half.
“We lost at their homecoming last year 1-0, so we improved on that result,” Barringer said. “Defensively, we stepped it up and handled their crosses well. We have a very reliable defense.”
Up next for Brunswick is a match against Taft School Saturday on the road at 2 p.m.
“When you get 12 shots against a team like Choate, score one and hit a post, that’s a sign that your team played very well,” Simpson said. “I have nothing but praise about our performance.”
PLAYER OF THE GAME: Ben Powers: His goal off a set piece enabled the Bruins to forge a 1-1 tie.
BRUNSWICK 1, CHOATE ROSEMARY HALL 1
CHOATE ROSEMARY HALL 1 0 — 1
BRUNSWICK 1 0 — 1
Records: Brunswick 0-0-1; Choate 1-0-1
Goals: C — Sebastian Barquin Sanchez; B — Ben Powers; Assists: B — Nick Boardman; Goalies: C — Julius Chlang Boekman (5 saves), Gil Salzman (6 saves); B — Harry Barringer (8 saves).