Connecticut HS Boys Hockey – Early Season Division 1 Top 8: Fairfield Prep, ND-West Haven Teams To Beat Again

Jim Clark
Jim Clark joined Hockey Night in Boston in December 2019, and has covered high school hockey in Massachusetts for more than three decades. He also covers high school hockey and is a multiplatform editor for the Boston Globe, and previously spent two decades as high school hockey reporter at the Boston Herald, where he also served as the high schools editor from 2000-06. Clark was honored by the Mass. State Hockey Coaches Association with its William Stewart Award for contributions to the sport in May 2019, and also received the Joel Perlmutter Award for media coverage in 2006. A graduate of UMass, he also spent eight years as sports editor/reporter at the Sentinel & Enterprise in Fitchburg, and has extensively covered high school hockey in Central and Western Mass. as well as Connecticut.

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Connecticut Boys Division 1 Top 8

1New Canaan3301
3Fairfield Prep1220
4Notre Dame-West Haven2110
5Fairfield Warde/Ludlowe8300
7Northwest CatholicNR301
8Xavier 5220

They didn’t get to decide it on the ice last season in a Connecticut state tournament, and the scheduled conference championship was canceled because of COVID protocols, which meant Fairfield Prep and Notre Dame-West Haven were declared co-champions.

With a new season upon us, both teams will be the cream of the crop in Connecticut again. But at least for starters, Fairfield Prep gets the nod as the No. 1 team in the Hockey Night in Boston early season rankings. The Jesuits lost some talent from last season, but Matthew Sather’s crew always reloads and has enough of a returning core to be considered the team to beat.

That means Notre Dame-West Haven is in the No. 2 spot. The young but skilled Green Knights have plenty of depth and speed, and will challenge themselves with a tough out-of-state schedule.

No. 3 New Canaan ended up winning the FCIAC Division 1 championship, and with experienced goalie Beau Johnson back in the fold, the Rams will be a tough out again.

Darien was considered by most coaches to be the team to beat in the FCIAC and they certainly have the talent to unseat New Canaan, but the Blue Wave check in at No. 4.

There has been plenty of preseason hype about a very experienced No. 5 Xavier squad with 10 seniors among 15 returning players overall.

No. 6 Greenwich is another team with a strong senior group, and the Cardinals certainly will be in the FCIAC mix.

No. 7 Ridgefield already put its potential on display by pushing Fairfield Prep to overtime in the season opener.

At No. 8, Fairfield Warde/Ludlowe is ineligible for the tournament under the CIAC’s co-op rules, but the Mustangs are eligible for the HNIB rankings and they round out the early Division 1 field under new coach Mark Mongillo.

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