The seniors on Greenwich’s girls ice hockey team have experienced a wealth of winning moments at Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink the past several seasons, but their time at their home ice will soon come to a close.
That’s why Tuesday’s game against visiting Ridgefield/Danbury had special significance to the seniors, who played like they were indeed, enjoying the moment.
Tuesday marked the second to last home game for the Cardinals and Senior Day for five players, who were recognized by their teammates for the leadership they’ve provided over the years.
Once the puck was dropped, Greenwich celebrated its Senior Day in style, skating to a 6-0 victory against Ridgefield/Danbury at Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink. The win improved the Cardinals’ record to 5-3, heading into Wednesday’s anticipated matchup against Darien at Darien Ice House.
Greenwich, which edged Ridgefield/Danbury in the first meeting between the squads, 4-3, scored four goals in the second period Tuesday, after tallying twice in the first period.
“They’re a good team, but I think overall, we definitely played well defensively,” Cardinals senior goalie/quad-captain Hannah Goldenberg said. “It was a really good defensive effort and an overall great effort from everyone. We’ve definitely improved a lot from the beginning of the year.”
The Cardinals received goals from five different players and saw Goldenberg shine in goal once again, as she registered 28 saves for the shutout.
“Looking at the score, we beat them by only one goal at the beginning of the year, so our team is coming together well,” said Goldenberg, a four-year varsity player, who kept Ridgefield off the scoreboard with a number of impressive saves.
Sophomore forward Sophie Roth scored the game’s first goal, tallying off a rebound at the 9:50 mark of the first period, while the Cards put traffic in front of the net. After Greenwich controlled the ensuing faceoff, sophomore forward Kelsey Roth, Sophie’s twin sister, converted a shot from the right wing , putting the Cardinals on top, 2-0. Roth’s linemate, sophomore Caroline Lawrence, assisted on the tally.
Positioned at the left faceoff circle, junior forward Lexi Danielson lifted a shot that beat Ridgefield sophomore goalie Bella Crowley to her stick side, making it 3-0 with 55 seconds into the second period. Sophie Roth scored her second goal off a tip on a shot by sophomore forward Elizabeth Anderson with 11:09 to go in the second period. Senior defender Emiri Fukuchi tallied and senior defender Delaney Roth scored from between the circles, capping Greenwich’s four-goal second period.
Roth, Goldenberg, Fukuchi and Riley Geary are the Cardinals’ senior captains.
“It’s been an amazing experience, I have three great fellow co-captains and we played together in the past at Greenwich Skating Club,” Delaney Roth said. “We’re a tight-knit group, so it’s been such an amazing experience to be out here as a team with all that’s going on in the world. We’re getting better and better each day. Our underclassmen did a great job of putting all of this together for us and we appreciate all they did.”
Said Fukuchi: “Senior Day is bittersweet. I have played hockey at Greenwich High for four seasons and it has been really fun. I enjoyed the underclassmen creating posters for us, it was really nice.”
Despite being shut out, Ridgefield/Danbury applied pressure in Greenwich’s zone and generated 28 shots on goal. Junior Hailey Sheppard, senior Abby McGuire and senior Kate Zangre each recorded several shots during the second and third periods for Ridgefield/Danbury.
“Ridgefield is a great team, but I think we really stepped it up today, we created open spaces and we had nice passes,” Fukuchi said. “There was also a lot of communication and encouragement on the bench.”
Added Geary: “It’s definitely different from past seasons and we’re all just trying to put our best foot forward to come out stronger as a team. We lost a couple of months from the season and preseason because of COVID, so I think it’s really important that we are coming together stronger now. We are getting used to each other, the lines are kind of different this year, so everyone is trying to adjust.”
Said senior Valerie Zhang: “We’ve had our challenges, but we’re getting better with each game.”
Greenwich’s game against FCIAC rival Darien is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. on Wednesday.
“This was a good win and we’re looking to build off it tomorrow (Wednesday),” Delaney Roth said.