RIDGEFIELD—The Darien football team is good enough it does not need any gifts from its opponents.
A gift is just what the Blue Wave got two plays into the rematch of last season’s Class LL championship game as Brian Minicus picked off a pass on the 11-yard line, bringing it back to the house for a quick pick 6.
Minicus was not done taking from the Tigers, running back another interception return in the third quarter and picking off his third pass of the game in the fourth as part of Darien’s five interceptions in the game.
Darien’s defense never let Ridgefield get anything going, harassing the quarterback all night and picking up several sacks to go along with the interceptions en route to a 38-12 win on opening night of the 2017 season at Tiger Hollow.
With the victory, Darien runs its winning streak to 26 games going back to 2014 Class L championship game when the Blue Wave lost to New Canaan. They have not lost a regular season game since falling to St. Joseph in 2013.
Darien defeated the Tigers 28-7 in last year’s Class LL state final.
Darien (1-0) went up 14-0 with Jack Joyce hitting Maxwell Grant on a 27-yard touchdown completion, capping an 85-yard drive for the visitors.
Ridgefield (0-1) stayed in the game with a special-teams play.
Noah Isaacson blocked a Darien punt which fell right into the arms of Connor Goff, who trotted in from the 5-yard line for the touchdown, making it 14-6 Darien moments into the second quarter.
Darien tacked on before the half as Joyce again hooked up with Grant, this time with a 14-yard touchdown strike.
Darien put the game away in the beginning of the third quarter.
Austin Hagander nailed a 30-yard field goal and Minicus took another Ridgefield pass back the house two plays later, making the score 31-6.
Ridgefield would get a third-quarter touchdown on a 1-yard pass from Greg Gatto to Jackson Mitchell.
Darien would tack on a late 25-yard touchdown run by Maxwell Bornstein, wrapping up the scoring.
DARIEN 38, RIDGEFIELD 12
DARIEN 14 7 10 7– 38
RIDGEFIELD 0 6 6 0– 12
D—Brian Minicus 11 interception return (Austin Hagander kick)
D—Maxwell Grant 27 pass Jack Joyce (Hagander kick)
R—Connor Goff 5 recovered blocked punt (kick failed)
D—Grant 14 pass Joyce (Hagander kick)
D—Hagander 30 field goal
D—Minicus 20 interception return
R—Jackson Mitchell 1 pass Greg Gatto (2-point try failed)
D—Maxwell Bornstein 25 run (Hagander kick)
Records: D 1-0; R 0-1