New Canaan ices Greenwich in girls hockey
GREENWICH -- Over the past few seasons the New Canaan girls ice hockey team rode its depth to FCIAC titles and state championship appearances.
Hompe scored five goals, including a natural hat trick in the second period, lifting New Canaan to an 8-0 win over Greenwich on Monday afternoon at Dorothy Hamill Skating Rink.
"The thing we always stress when we play a team like Greenwich that is young and scrappy, is that you still have to come out and play your game," NC coach Rich Bulan said. "I liked that we set the tone early and kept up the pressure."
The newest member of the top line is Granito, a freshman, who had a goal and three assists. Although short on experience, she is exceeding all expectations thus far with 12 goals and 16 assists through eight games, helping her team to an 8-0 start.
"(Granito) has done great," Hompe said. "She's stepped up a lot and has helped Corbett and I. It will be interesting to see how she progresses but we love playing with her." Hompe displayed the dazzling set of skills that has made her the state's all-time leading scorer. The senior got on the board just 14 seconds into the contest after controlling an offensive zone faceoff and firing a low shot into the net.
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"She is not statistically driven; she wants to win and always wants to take it a step better than last year," Bulan said. "She has more assists (21) than goals (20) this year because she has linemates she is comfortable with, and that has made her a better player."
The Cardinals were run ragged by the visitors, and despite a morale-boosting, come-from-behind 4-3 win against Wilton on Saturday, the momentum failed to carry over as Greenwich was unable to find the back of the net.
"We really need to step it up in conditioning," Greenwich captain Caroline Lee said. "We have enough girls out there but we were dying. I thought we would come out like the last period on Saturday but I guess we didn't have that much effort."
Greenwich had some good looks at the net in its attempt to break up the shutout, but Rams netminder Nathalie DeNey did enough to keep them at bay. The junior, in her first season on the ice after being a backup goalie on the lacrosse team, made 21 saves, including a sprawling effort in the second period to deny a Greenwich attacker that was left all alone in front of the net.
"We were proud of the effort," Greenwich coach Brett Farson said. "We got a lot of pressure on their goal; we created a lot of traffic and had some rebound chances."
New Canaan will take on Hall/Conrad in its next contest on Saturday, the team that topped the Rams 3-2 in overtime last season to deny them their third straight state title. It's a defeat that keeps the squad motivated despite their sheer dominance of the conference.
"We are looking forward to that," Hompe said. "After a close overtime loss in the state finals is always one you're not going to forget and it motivated a lot of the girls to improve in the offseason."
NEW CANAAN 8, GREENWICH 0
NEW CANAAN 4 3 1--8
GREENWICH 0 0 0--0
Goals: NC -- Olivia Hompe 5, Catherine Granito, Kylie Glover, Madzie Carroll; Assists: NC--Granito (3) Corbett Ripley (2), Kit Clemente; Goalies: NC-- Nathalie DeNey (21 saves); G -- Dart Freccian (20) Lisa Lewis (7).
Records: New Canaan (8-0, 5-0 FCIAC); Greenwich (3-5, 3-2).