Darien High School’s girls ice hockey team entered this past Saturday’s game against FCIAC rival Greenwich unbeaten through its first 12 matchups, while averaging five goals per game.
Relentless from the outset in terms of applying pressure in the Cardinals’ zone and getting the puck to the net, the Blue Wave continued their torrid pace against the Cardinals, keeping their unbeaten season going in impressive fashion.
Senior captain Kelsey Brown registered two goals and one assist to power Darien to a decisive 6-0 victory over Greenwich in an FCIAC game at Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink. The win moved Darien’s record to 13-0-1, heading into today’s game against conference foe Wilton/Norwalk/McMahon. Greenwich’s record following Saturday’s game was 4-8. The Cardinals also suffered a 4-0 loss to the Blue Wave back in December.
For Darien and coach Jamie Tropsa, they have plenty to be pleased about heading into the home stretch of the season. The Blue Wave possess a lot of depth, receive production from each one of its lines and have a good rotation of defenders.
“The effort and moving the puck was outstanding,” Tropsa said. We might have moved the puck better tonight than we have the whole season, collectively as a group. Our goaltending was also very good.”
Darien sports a record of 12-0 in the FCIAC and is in first place. The only game they haven’t won so far this season came against Greenwich Academy, as they skated to a 1-1 tie against GA.
Greenwich, which has lost four straight games, is 4-8 overall and 4-4 in FCIAC play (fourth place in the conference).
“We battled hard, there was no quit in our team,” Greenwich coach Doub Jebb said. “They scored one goal in the third period. We fought it out, we went to three lines in the third period and every single one of the players skated very hard. “We’re very proud of them.”
The Blue Wave led 3-0 after the first period and held a 5-0 advantage following the second period. Darien’s first goal came with the team on a power play at the 5:47 mark of the opening period. Sophomore Natalie Beach converted a shot from just above the left faceoff dot, making it 1-0. With the Blue Wave getting traffic in front of the net, Brown knocked a rebound past GHS senior goalie Emma Kunschner, putting the Blue Wave ahead, 2-0, with 4:21 to go in the first period. Freshman linemate Mia Avalos was credited with the assist on Brown’s tally.
After winning the ensuing faceoff, Darien tallied again just 12 seconds later. Brown again scored, snapping a shot home from the left faceoff circle, giving Darien a 3-0 first-period advantage.
Senior Morgan Massey notched a goal with 12:04 left in the second period and teammate Sarah Kellogg added a tally with 2:26 to go in the frame, extending Darien’s lead to 5-0.
Kunschner was kept extremely active in goal throughout each period, making more than 30 saves for the Cardinals.
“I think we definitely put forth our best effort, we just didn’t get the results that we wanted,” said Kunschner, who has provided effective play between the pipes for the Cards. “We worked hard the whole game.”
“We had some good defensive efforts, on defense we some of our players played very well. Darien is a really good team, they have a deep bench and that definitely helps.”
Junior Lindsay Allen, senior Hannah Wahl, sophomore Lexi Carino and freshman Daphne Martinez paced Greenwich’s defensive play.
“We talk about getting better every single period, every single game, every single week and we feel we are getting better,” Jebb said. “What we’re trying to do is keep getting better every single day. We are moving the puck better, we are pressuring them better and the effort is there.”
The shutout was the fifth of the season for the Blue Wave. Senior Katherine Kahn, who has enjoyed a standout season, got the start in goal for Darien and sophomore Isabella played in the third period in net.
“The effort was fantastic, which was good to see,” Tropsa said of his squad. “Our first two lines were relentless, they are playing really well. Our senior leadership has been amazing. The attitude in the locker room has been super all year. Every day, they work harder and harder, so it’s nice to see.”
Greenwich is playing at West Haven tonight. The non-conference game began at 5:30 p.m.
Greenwich ice hockey teams remember Kristin Bien
The Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink family lost a beloved member, recently. Kristin Bien, a longtime resident of Greenwich died peacefully on December 19, 2022, with her family at her side, after a short illness.
Her husband Jason Bien is a longtime employee at Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink and has spent countless hours at the rink over the years, supporting the Greenwich High School boys and girls hockey teams and all of the teams that compete on and off the ice.
Kristin Bien also spent a lot of time at Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink supporting the numerous programs that competed at the facility.
Kristin is survived by the love of her life her husband, Jason Bien and her Mother-in-law Marylee. Kristin is also survived by her loving Mother and best friend Nancy, her 2 brothers, Jason, his wife Maureen, Daniel and his wife Megan and her father Alan and his wife Cindy.
She is also survived by her half-brothers Ian, Brian and Devin Hall, as well as her brother-in-law Dennis Bien. Kristin worked for Guardian Services in Norwalk City Hall for 15 years.
Categories: Greenwich High, Winter sports
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