GREENWICH, Conn. One league title was nice for Greenwich girls soccer coach Danny Simpson. When the Cardinals won a second straight championship with a 1-0 win over Fairfield Warde on Saturday, he had difficulty finding the right words.
It hasnt sunk in yet, Simpson said. When we started seven years ago, we never made the FCIAC and only made states twice.
Emma Christie scored the games only goal with 18:07 left in the first half. Christie was unmarked in the box about seven yards away from the Warde goal when she converted a sweet pass from Amanda Onofrio for the score.
The second-seeded Cardinals (13-2-4) came out flying in the first 20 minutes and put consistent pressure on the Warde defense. The No. 7 Mustangs (11-6-2) held until Christies score, and it seemed Greenwich might have an easy time pulling away.
Warde hung tough, however, and pressed for the equalizer in the final 20 minutes. Maddie Graham made one save for Greenwich to get the shutout, but the Cardinals had trouble clearing over the final half of the game.
That was a tough one, Simpson said. Warde was fantastic. We played so well in the final 20 minutes. They came at us with everything they had. Give credit to our girls. They stood firm and we didnt give them a real good chance for 80 minutes. Thats a credit to them. Theyre worthy champions.
Greenwich knocked off No. 1 seeded St. Joseph in Thursdays semifinals to reach the championship. There was no let-up Saturday, and Simpson believes the experience from last year proved helpful. They knew that they had to get through the semi to get to the final, Simpson said. The work wasnt done.
Now Greenwich can turn its attention to the Class LL state tournament. Not without, however, reflecting on a terrific accomplishment for a team that is loaded with underclassmen. In high school soccer you only get to win two tournaments, Simpson said. Lets be greedy and get the next one, too.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.