Receiving two goals from Liam Matthews and 33 saves from Charlie Zolin, the Greenwich boys ice hockey team got back on the winning track Wednesday, skating to a 3-1 victory against Notre Dame-West Haven at Bennett Rink in West Haven.
The Cardinals, who were coming off a tough 1-0 loss to St. Joseph, improved their record to 6-4 with two games remaining in the regular season. The FCIAC Tournament commences next week.
“We wanted to come out with a sense of urgency and show our speed against a very good Notre Dame-West Haven team,” Greenwich coach Jack Duffy said. “Notre Dame is a quality program that is well-coached. It was a good road win.”
Greenwich tallied twice in the first period to take a 2-0 lead. Senior Jack Hutchins scored the game’s first goal, with assists going to seniors Sean Duffy and Ben Bates.
“We’ve had trouble scoring this season and I told the team that we are going to start getting some bounces going our way,” coach Duffy said. “But we also have to create our own bounces, which starts with a good forecheck.”
The Cards went ahead, 2-0, on an unassisted goal from Matthews, a junior, with just 10 seconds remaining in the opening period.
“That goal that came with just seconds remaining in the first period was nice to see,” Duffy said. “A lot of times when there’s a few seconds left, teams stop playing and look to the next period. But our guys kept forechecking.”
Following a scoreless second period, Notre Dame-West Haven cut Greenwich’s lead to 2-1 with a third-period tally. Matthews sealed the scoring with a goal in the final period, as the Cardinals regained their two-goal advantage. Zolin was impressive once again in goal, turning away 33 shots.
“Both goalies played great, we are seeing that a lot this season, where there are so many good goalies,” Duffy said. “That’s why every game is tough.”
Greenwich plays back-to-back games against Fairfield Ludlowe/Warde Friday and Saturday, with Friday’s game taking place at Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink at 5:15 p.m. Fairfield Ludlowe/Warde has a record of 8-1-1.
“They are having a great year and are a really solid team,” Duffy said of Fairfield. “They play a good system and are well coached. It should be a fun two nights leading up to the FCIAC Tournament. Our team is really feeling confident about what we are doing out there.”