TORRINGTON >> Torrington (5-2-1) and Seymour (4-2-2) played as good a boys soccer game as fans are likely to see this year to a 3-3 tie at Torrington’s Robert H. Frost Sports Complex Monday evening.
“It was a great game, even though I hate to see us give up a 2-0 lead,” said Torrington Coach Mike Fritch.
“There were missed opportunities with both sides,” said Seymour Coach Joe Perucci.
That’s part of what made the game great, as players all over the field worked top speed for and against continuing opportunities down to the final seconds of the game.
Nobody’s top speed was faster than Torrington’s Naseem Thompson, with all three of the Red Raider goals. Nobody played the angles better that Seymour’s Noah Galietta (2 goals) and Ray Guard.
Thompson’s speed lit up the scoreboard two minutes into the game. Freshman Xavier Rodas, in his first varsity game, served a perfect ball to Thompson, breaking free for a 1-0 Torrington lead.
“We practiced for him, but we got caught sleeping,” said Perucci.
Twelve minutes later, Thompson, a junior, faced two Wildcat defenders, one at a time, juking past each of them for his second goal.
Down 2-0, Perucci sent Galietta forward, cashing in on the move 11 minutes from the half.
Seymour’s Jean Virvet got his head on a corner kick to the box from Griffen Tomas. The ball flicked to Galietta, three yards away and into the net.
A minute into the second half, Ray Guard stunned the Raiders with a tying goal off a perfect cross from Tomas.
“We let down a little bit,” said Fritch.
“We went into a different formation in the second half,” said Perucci.
Seymour was more aggressive than ever. Torrington’s great backs were busier than ever.
Sixteen minutes into the half, Galietta skimmed a restart from Virvet off the top of his head to the goal for a 3-2 Wildcat lead.
Now Torrington stepped up the pace, with Alex Segovia moving up front from his sweeper position.
Torrington pressure, in the 27th minute, rolled a shot off Wildcat keeper Peter Ragaini, rattling for seconds in the penalty box.
Thompson darted in for the tying goal, 3-3.
Segovia was inches away from putting it away for Torrington in the final three minutes – the first time on a header that hit the corner of the Seymour frame, the second, with 43 seconds left, on a direct kick just over the net.
As the seconds ticked down, both teams still fought furiously in the Torrington penalty box for and against the Wildcats’ final chance at the win.
“I think we’ll see each other again (in the league tournament),” said Fritch. “This year, I think the league is wide open for anybody who steps up.”
Torrington faces another big test Friday at 6-1-1 Woodland.
Seymour hosts 2-4-1 Crosby Thursday.
Torrington 3, Seymour 3
At Torrington High School
Seymour 1 2 – 3
Torrington 2 1 – 3
Goals: S – Noah Galietta (2); Ray Guard. T – Naseem Thompson (3). Assists: S – Jean Virvet (2); Griffen Tomas. T – Xavier Rodas. Shots: 13-13. Saves: S – Peter Ragaini 6. T – Luke Wassik 10.
Records: Seymour 4-2-2; Torrington 5-2-1.