Ridgefield struck first in Saturday night’s FCIAC Tournament quarterfinal against Greenwich, yet the Cardinals had the final say on this night.
In a rematch of last season’s FCIAC quarterfinals, which was won by the Tigers, the Cardinals experienced a reversal of fortunes, topping host Ridgefield at Winter Garden Ice Arena.
Avenging last year’s postseason loss, fifth-seeded Greenwich earned a 3-1 comeback win over fourth-seeded host Ridgefield. The triumph advanced the Cardinals into Wednesday’s FCIAC Tournament semifinals, where they will face top-seeded Darien in a game scheduled to begin at 5 p.m.
The victory was the seventh of the season for Greenwich, which has won two out of its last three games.
“Overall, I’m very pleased with the guy’s effort,” Greenwich coach Jack Duffy said. “We seemed very consistent and we’ve received an intense effort from the boys the last three games. We got a good win against Northwest Catholic recently as well.”
Capitalizing on a 2-on-1 Ridgefield scored shortly after the opening faceoff, taking a 1-0 lead just 20 seconds into the first period. Approximately two minutes later, the Cardinals evened the score. Junior Bailey Rozmus scored off a pass from senior Derek D’Angelo, tying the score at 1-1. Logan Carino, a senior, also helped set up the equalizer.
“Logan Carino put a good body check on a defenseman and created a 2- on-1 Derek made a nice move and Bailey had an open net, it was a bang-bang play, so he had to one-time it,” Duffy explained. “Derek made a great play and Bailey finished it off. It was a really great play.”
“When a team scores that early in the game, you want to see how the kids react and they didn’t skip a beat,” Duffy said of his team’s response to Ridgfield’s tally in the game’s opening seconds. “Giving up that goal early, you have two choices, do you fold your tents or do you go back to work and our guys wouldn’t be denied.”
Late in the second period, senior Owen Lanzarone gave GHS the lead for good at 2-1, tipping in a shot from the point from freshman Boden Farmer. The goal occurred with the Cards on a power play, which sophomore Graydon Raabe drew. Senior Peter Lewis also assisted on Lanzarone’s go-ahead goal.
“It really fired up the boys to have a lead going into the third period,” Duffy said.
In the final seconds of the third period, the Cardinals clinched the win with an empty-netter. The Tigers were also on a power play, so they had a 6-on-4 advantage during the final minute, which provided some tense moments for Greenwich.
“They beat us 4-0 last year in the FCIACs, playing there is a very tough place to play, they always go hard at home and they’re a tough team,” Duffy said of Ridgefield.
Senior goalie Cole Studwell was rock-solid for Greenwich, turning away numerous Ridgefield shots. Now the Cards get another shot at rival Darien in Wednesday’s FCIAC semifinals. Greenwich was edged by Darien, 1-0, at the Winter Classic, held outdoors at Greenwich Skating Club on Dec. 29 and dropped a 5-1 decision to the Blue Wave at Darien Ice House on Feb. 8.
“They are the No. 1 team in the FCIAC, top five in the state and a great team,” Duffy said of Darien. “We’re feeling good right now and we’re ready to put up a big fight. “We are starting to heat up during the most important part of the year.”
Categories: Greenwich High, Winter sports
Wonderful game, you guys are terrific, Wish I was there in person
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