Final Connecticut D2 Poll: Fairfield ends strong to win state title

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

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Connecticut Division 2 Poll

RankTeam[tooltip text="PR*" gravity="ne"]Previous Ranking[/tooltip]WLT
2North Branford42051
5South Windsor210101
7East Haven109104
8North Haven910112
10E.O. Smith/TollandNR1581

In a year when it seemed everyone could lose to anyone, Fairfield had a few head-scratchers during the season, but the Mustangs won when it mattered. The program earned its second Connecticut Division II championship in four years, taking the top spot in Hockey Night in Boston’s final D2 rankings. Fairfield’s three midseason Division I wins foretold their eventual reign, which was sealed with Jake Fuss’ overtime goal to beat North Branford. The Thunderbirds had been on a roll, winning 17 of their last 20 and taking home the SCC/SWC championship.

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No. 3 Cheshire, with Jake Verneris in net, had a chance in most games; a couple of close losses to Fairfield showed that. No. 4 Guilford earned a trip to the semifinals with wins over Trumbull and No. 8 North Haven.

In that year when anyone could lose to anyone, No. 5 South Windsor and No. 6 Conard fell victim at the worst time: the first round of the CIAC tournament. Conard fell to No. 7 East Haven, and South Windsor lost to No. 9 Branford.

No. 10 E.O. Smith/Tolland, last year’s Division III champion, had a solid year moving up a division and beat New Milford in the first round of the state tournament.

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