Greenwich can’t overcome early deficit, fall to Darien in FCIAC lax finals

The Greenwich High School boys lacrosse team more than ready for its battle with Darien High School in the FCIAC championship game.

However before the Cardinals could blink, the Blue Wave jumped out to a 2-0 lead and never looked back, beating Big Red 10-5 for the school’s 13th FCIAC championship.

“Darien is a really good team,” Greenwich High School head coach Scott Bulkley said. “I don’t think we executed our stuff as best as we could. I don’t think we played great defense. You can’t discredit what Darien did. They have a really good offense and was able to shoot the ball extremely well. All the opportunities they had, they were able to capitalize on. In a game like this, you have to match goals and once again like in the first game, we didn’t do that.”

With the victory, Darien tied Wilton High School for the most FCIAC championships with 13. Next closest is New Canaan High School with nine.

Leading the way for Big Red was Luke Finneran, who couldn’t be stopped early on, scoring the first three goals for Greenwich and finished with four on the day. Bobby Goggin and Kyle Foote scored the other two goals for the Cardinals.

For the Blue Wave, Peter Lindley was able to match Finneran, finishing with four goals and an assist. Harry Gillespie added two goals and an assist, while Coling Minicus and John Reed finished with two goals. Jack Kniffin pitched in with one goal.

“It was a great team win straight across the board; from the hustle on the rides, to the team defense,” Darien High School head coach Jeff Brameier said. “The team offense sharing the ball; and the celebrating. That’s what it’s all about, enjoying each other together — great senior group, senior leadership.”

Greenwich’s start was exactly what Bulkley and Cardinals were hoping wouldn’t happen. With only 1:27 gone by in the game, goals from Darien’s Lindley and Gillespie gave the Blue Wave a quick 2-0 lead. Darien was able to find the open looks and break through the Greenwich defense.

Four more goals by Darien gave them a 6-0 lead before Big Red finally broke through. Will Perry gained possession of the ball and passed to Finneran for the open look at the net at point-blank range. Another Finneran goal on basically the same exact play helped Greenwich cut the deficit to 6-2.

Although the Blue Wave answered, Finneran was able to cut the halftime deficit to 7-3 when he darted down the field, made a nice move on the Darien defense and uncorked a shot from the right side of the net foe the goal with one second to play in the half.

“We dug ourselves in a little bit of a whole, but we had shots in the first session and they didn’t go our way,” Bulkley said. “We had two goals that were disallowed and that’s a momentum thing. We just couldn’t get that push to get close enough where it was a dogfight.”

To read more about the game and to see photos from FCIAC championships, check out Thursday’s Greenwich Post sports section.

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