Darien wasted little time in playing from ahead in its game against FCIAC soccer rival Greenwich on Monday.
The Blue Wave scored 17 seconds into the first half and rode a wave of momentum throughout in registering an impressive 4-0 victory over the Cardinals in an FCIAC West Region matchup. The game marked the regular season finale for both teams. Greenwich has a record of 9-1 and will enter the FCIAC West Region Tournament as the No. 1 seed. The Cardinals will host a semifinal round game in the tournament on Friday.
Darien (5-3-3) hosts Westhill on Friday in the semifinals.
“The team played well today, we had a few injuries and we only started two seniors today, so the future is bright,” Darien coach Jon Bradley said. “We came to play.”
Greenwich opted to play its reserves Monday, while its usual starting players rested.
“I thought we passed the ball around real nice,” Greenwich coach Kurt Putnam said. “There was some loose marking and some mistakes and you are going to expect that.”
Darien received one goal apiece from sophomore Matthew Kennedy, sophomore James Kennedy, junior Chase Caruso and sophomore Henry Cavanna.
Sophomore Thomas Branca played most of the game in goal, making six saves. After Darien took a 1-0 lead with a transition goal 17 seconds into the first half, they upped their advantage with a tally shortly after a corner kick, as Greenwich failed to clear the ball out of harm’s way with 26:33 left in the first half.
In the 42nd minute, Caruso’s goal off a strong run made it 3-0. Seniors Harrison Kriebel and Adem Murad played in goal for Greenwich.
“It’s as much of a learning lesson for the guys who were on the bench as it was for the guys who played,” Putnam said. “There are lessons to be learned on both sides.”
Bradley was impressed with his young squad’s quick start and aggressiveness throughout.
“Starting a team that was so young, we came out of the blocks quick, which was good to see,” he said. “The first cold day, one team always comes out quick. It was nice to beat them and get off to a quick start.
We tried a different formation that seemed to work better than the first time we played them. It was nice to finally put some goals in.”