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Final Connecticut D1 Poll: Two-time champ Darien heads the list

Connecticut Division I Poll

RankTeamPR*WLT
1Darien12140
2Fairfield Prep412102
3Notre Dame (WH)51581
4Xavier21750
5HamdenNR9122
6Greenwich31950
7Notre Dame (Fairfield)610120
8St. JosephNR13111
9Simsbury71661
10Northwest Catholic81670

Sustained playoff excellence is all about the Blue Wave right now.

Darien has won back-to-back Connecticut Division I championships. It has reached three consecutive finals, winning 11 of the past 12 CIAC games, as well as 13 of the past 15 if you include a semifinal run the year before.

The Blue Wave top Hockey Night in Boston’s final Connecticut D1 rankings, a spot they held most of the year. No. 2, and preseason No. 1, Fairfield Prep took its lumps as it got some players accustomed to new spots, but with a young lineup, the Jesuits still got stronger as the year went on and reached the final, besting in the semifinals another young team that grew throughout the year, No. 5 Hamden.

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No. 3 Notre Dame-West Haven came together around its captain, Doug Caliendo, after the passing of his father and reached the semifinals before falling to Darien. It remains one of the state’s strongest programs. A school that is establishing itself among that group? No. 4 Xavier, one of the state’s more consistent teams this year.

No. 6 Greenwich had its moments, too, one of only three schools in-state (ND-West Haven and No. 8 St. Joseph, a team that seemed capable of a shocker on any given day) to beat Darien this year. It just couldn’t find an overtime goal to beat Hamden in two tries. No. 7 Notre Dame-Fairfield had its own ups and downs before bowing out to the other Notre Dame in the quarters.

Speaking of any given day, two upstate teams that seemed capable of challenging anybody this year were No. 9 Simsbury and No. 10 Northwest Catholic. Despite strong regular seasons, they bowed out within hours of each other on opposite sides of the same complex in the first round.

Michael Fornabaio

Michael Fornabaio

Michael writes for Hockey Night in Boston, covers the Bridgeport Sound Tigers for the Connecticut Post, and once covered the Beast of New Haven. He grew up at the New Haven Coliseum. Story, blog links @BSTSoundinOff blog.ctnews.com/fornabaio.
Michael Fornabaio
- 9 hours ago