Connecticut HS Hockey – CIAC Division 1 Quarterfinals: New Canaan Edges Darien; Greenwich Beats #3 Simsbury In OT

Doug Bonjour
Doug Bonjour
Doug Bonjour joined Hockey Night in Boston in November 2022. He has covered high school and college sports in Connecticut for more than a decade, including stints as the UConn women’s basketball and UConn football beat reporter for Hearst Connecticut Media. During his time reporting on the 11-time national champion Huskies, he covered three NCAA Final Fours. He previously was a general assignment reporter for GameTimeCT and the Connecticut Post, and covered high school sports statewide, including boys hockey. Prior to that he was the managing/sports editor for the Westport News and Norwalk Citizen community weekly newspapers. He also has written for the Associated Press and New York Times. He graduated from Hofstra University in 2008 with a degree in print journalism.

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New Canaan hasn’t reached a CIAC boys hockey final since 2006 despite its perennial success. The Rams are finally in position to end that lengthy drought, but first they’ll need to get past top-seeded Notre Dame-West Haven. The defending champions shut out Ridgefield in Saturday’s Division I quarterfinal round, setting up a powerhouse showdown in the next round between the Rams and Green Knights.

On the opposite end of the bracket is second-seeded Fairfield Prep and resurgent Greenwich. The 11th-seeded Cardinals have strung together back-to-back overtime wins over higher seeds. 

Here’s a recap of the action. 

Defending champ Notre Dame-WH cruises; New Canaan edges rival

Tye Battipaglia
ND-West Haven

Top-seeded Notre Dame-West Haven snapped its two-game losing streak, shutting out No. 8 seed Ridgefield 5-0 to advance to the Division I semifinals. The Green Knights, on the heels of a first-round bye, did all their scoring over the first two periods and held a commanding 34-10 edge in shots. Tye Battipaglia had two goals, and James Mascari, Michael Troiano and Michael Azzarone each scored once. 

The win sets up a rematch with New Canaan, which advanced with a 4-1 victory over FCIAC champion Darien, the No. 5 seed. Trailing 1-0, the fourth-seeded Rams erupted for four goals in the third period, starting with Logan Carlson with a shade under nine minutes remaining. Gavin Fitzpatrick gave the Rams the lead with 4:03 left, and Bryce Lyden and Doster Crowell added goals, the last an empty-netter. Mason Pickering stymied Darien in net, making 18 saves. ND-WH and New Canaan last met on Feb. 4, with the Green Knights winning 2-0. 

Fairfield Prep advances; Greenwich perseveres in OT

Will Donnelly Fairfield Prep

Second-seeded Fairfield Prep downed No. 10 seed Notre Dame-Fairfield 4-2, leaving the perennial powerhouse within one of returning to its first Division I final since 2019. Will Donnelly tied it 2-2 with 3:10 remaining, and Blake Baksay gave the Jesuits the lead just seconds later with his second goal of the game. Owen McNicholas added an empty-netter. 

Next round, the Jesuits will face 11th-seeded Greenwich, which upset third-seeded Simsbury 1-0 in overtime. Logan Carino notched the game-winner at 6:41 of overtime, making the Cardinals the third double-digit seed to reach the semifinals (No. 12 North Branford in Division II, No. 15 Rocky Hill in Division III). It was the second consecutive overtime victory for the Cardinals, who edged No. 6 seed Northwest Catholic 3-2 in the first round. Cole Studwell stopped 28 shots for the shutout. 

Division I semifinals (Both games on Thursday at Quinnipiac University) 

No. 1 Notre Dame-West Haven vs. No. 4 New Canaan (8:00pm)

No. 2 Fairfield Prep vs. No. 11 Greenwich (5:30pm) 

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