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Greenwich Battles Westhill to a Draw

The game between the Greenwich High School and Westhill High School girls' soccer teams Tuesday was a matchup of two teams that have a lot of respect for the other. The contest came down to two shots in the final wild minute, which served as warning shots across the bows of both teams that a November showdown could be looming in the FCIAC or state tournament.

Westhill's superb passing and Greenwich's rough-and-tumble style seemed to cancel each other out as these two evenly matched squads fought to a 1-1 tie.

Both teams played most of the first half conservatively, seeming to be more concerned with avoiding injuries so close to the postseason. Neither team could create an offensive opportunity until late in the first half when Greenwich's Emma Christie executed a perfect direct kick near the corner, which Shannon Colligan redirected with a header right into the net.

Then midway through the second half, Westhill took advantage of almost the exact same type of play when Tessa Dunster lofted a perfect corner kick, which Alouna Velej headed in for the equalizer.

While the game was quite tame when it began, it ended with a frenzied volley. Dunster had a free kick from the top of the box with 55 seconds to play that sailed just high. Then Colligan answered with a close call of her own that nicked off the post with 33 seconds remaining.

"We definitely have respect for each other. We know they're the defending state champs," Colligan said. "This is the second year in a row we've tied. We have a chance to play these girls in FCIAC's and in states so we have to be ready again."

Greenwich is now 10-1-3 on the season and heads into today's game with a chance to get one of the top three spots in the FCIAC tournament . FCIAC playoff pairings will be announced Friday with the tournament beginning Saturday.

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