First place New Canaan kept itself undefeated, but Darien more than kept up with the FCIAC’s 10-0 team to beat.
“We definitely had our opportunities and didn’t capitalize on (them),” said girls Wave Hockey coach Jamie Tropsa of Darien’s 2-0 loss to the host Rams at DIR on Monday. “But our girls played a fabulous game and really gave us a chance to be there at the end of the day. So I was very happy.”
The Wave fired 24 shots on goal, including a penalty shot, and at the other end Darien goalie Shannon Hall made 26 saves.
Darien slips to 7-2-1 overall, 5-1 FCIAC.
They really should feel good about themselves, now knowing that if they capitalize it can be a different game.
— Jamie Tropsa
Madzie Carroll made it 1-0 from league leading senior Olivia Hompe and Corbett Ripley with 8:54 to go in the second period.
And Hompe scored unassisted in the third.
New Canaan (10-0, 6-0) goalie Nathalie Deney made 24 saves for the shutout, her third in four games in her first season for the Rams.
New Canaan holds the FCIAC top spot, Darien is second.
Keeping Hompe to two points, even while being blanked yourself, gave Darien’s youngsters — new to a rivalry, where Hompe has featured prominently, starring in many NC triumphs the past three seasons — is something Darien can build on for the post season.
“Olivia played great, but we did a really good job tracking her down and making sure she didn’t get any, really good opportunities,” Tropsa said. “Shannon Hall was spectacular in net. I think she stopped Olivia all alone once or twice.”
Darien’s defense had Hall’s back, from in front of her.
“All of our defensemen did a really good job, specifically Chandler Kirby had a great game shutting her down,” Tropsa said. “Lily Christensen did a great job.
“All the younger kids did a terrific job.”
Ellie Bennett and Georgia Cassidy, Sage Thacher twice, had some of Darien’s best chances to score — Thacher in with a penalty shot bid in the third, on net and stopped by Deney.
“After that I felt so bad for her,” Tropsa added. “Because that would have made it 2-1 with like four minutes left.”
And now, with many more than a few minutes to go in Darien having a chance to square things this season, with a likely playoffs clash between Wave and Rams the next act in the rivalry, Tropsa is encouraged.
“We have to be pleased with what we got out of the girls,” he said. “They really should feel good about themselves, now knowing that if they capitalize it can be a different game.”