NEW HAVEN — It’s a familiar story, rewritten every few years at Ingalls Rink, with a happy ending for Fairfield Prep, state boys hockey champions for the 14th time since 1991.
The Jesuits got at least one goal from each of their four forward lines and defeated rival Notre Dame-West Haven 5-2 Tuesday night, defending their Division I title in front of a sellout crowd at the 3,500-capacity arena.
Fifth-seeded, third-ranked Fairfield Prep (15-9-1) won their 18th state championship, all but the first in Division I. Hamden had won the most CIAC titles in state history, 17.
“A goal from each line, all eight defensemen grinding it out out there, and Jake (Walker, 22 saves) was spectacular,” Fairfield Prep coach Matt Sather said.
The Jesuits started the season 3-6, trying to replace a lot of the pieces that won them the championship last year.
Sixth-seeded, seventh-ranked Notre Dame-West Haven, which similarly built itself up over the course of the year, finishes 13-10-1. A five-game winning streak got the Green Dragons to the final.
“Fairfield Prep is the bar of high school hockey. They’ve won 18 state championships. That’s the level we need to achieve,” Notre Dame coach Larry Vieira said.
“Notre Dame hockey is used to this type of environment. We need to get this team past that bar. … It’s a wonderful step. In terms of the game, I felt that our youth showed up a little bit.”
Notre Dame-West Haven got a little life with 3:49 left in the second period. John D’Errico touched along a pass from Kevin Millea to set up Rory Andriole in front of the Fairfield Prep net to get the Green Knights on the board and cut the lead to 3-1.
It took the Jesuits 45 seconds to answer, Tommy Quinn’s backhand pass from below the goal line to the right of the Notre Dame net finding Mason Whitney in front.
Colin Bella of the Jesuits’ top line scored their last goal, 2:46 into the third period, before Charlie Andriole got Notre Dame a little closer.
The Jesuits jumped on top with 4:24 left in the first period. Connor Smith stopped Whitney’s right-circle shot, but Quinn found and buried the rebound in front for his first varsity goal.
“All the guys have been joking with me, ‘you’re gonna pop one,’” Quinn said. “It was incredible to have gotten the first, especially in this type of a game.”
They made it 2-0 on the rush just as the game’s first power play expired. Lucas Baksay was looking for Matt Wenger on a pass across the front of the net, but the puck caromed in off a defender.
Jack Esse made it 3-0 early in the second period on a rebound.
The teams held a pregame moment of silence for Rich Pogonelski. The former all-state Hamden defenseman died Monday at age 36.