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Greenwich Soccer Coach Discounts Favorite Role

GREENWICH, Conn. – Greenwich High’s boys soccer team has been mentioned as one of the league’s preseason favorites. Although Coach Kurt Putnam feels his team will be strong, he believes the Cardinals are a year away from legitimate contender status.

“We had two seniors in our starting lineup tonight,’’ Putnam said after the Cardinals lost to the Bears, 3-1, in the season-opener at Norwalk High School on Tuesday. “I don’t know why everybody is saying we’re a contender. We have a lot of underclassmen starting, and we have some players hurt. To me it’s a little blown out of proportion. Maybe next year.”

Norwalk is also one of the highly regarded teams in the Fairfield County Interscholastic Athletic Conference, and the Cardinals had the Bears on their heels in the first half. Peter Zenner scored just over five minutes into the game, and the Cardinals had several other good scoring chances. The teams ended the half tied, 1-1. “It’s a different story if got up 3-1,’’ Putnam said. “We didn’t take advantage of our chances.”

Norwalk controlled the second half, when Putnam thought his team's inexperience and fatigue started to play a part. “Norwalk’s a good team,’’ he said. “We haven’t played a team like that in the preseason. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them in the final.”

Putnam believes Greenwich will be better when its injured players return, and the defense gets more experience. “We’ve got some stuff work on, we need to get better on defense,’’ he said. “And when we get our players back, that will help.”

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