NEW HAVEN, March 9 – The Simsbury High girls ice hockey team is no stranger to success. They’ve won more than 100 regular season games and five conference championships during the past five seasons.
A year ago, the Trojans won the Southern Connecticut Conference title before seeing their state championship hopes doused in four-goal loss to New Canaan in the semifinals. In 2012, the Trojans were stunned in double overtime in the semifinals by Hall/Conard, which went on to upset New Canaan in double OT to win the state championship. In 2011, it was a surprising one-goal loss to Ridgefield in the first round of the tournament.
So, Simsbury was determined not to let another chance slip away Sunday. The Trojans kept the pressure on underdog Guilford for the entire game and won their first state championship with a 3-1 victory at Ingalls Rink on the Yale University campus.
Guilford pulled off two big upsets to earn a spot in its first state championship game. They eliminated New Canaan, who had won six of the last eight state titles, in the quarterfinals, 3-2. In the semifinals, Guilford goalie Edy Mortiz was spectacular with 50 saves in a 2-1 victory in overtime over top-seeded Darien.
From the opening whistle, Simsbury (22-2) went right out and took it to Guilford with junior forward Maggie Grigely scoring just three minutes into the game off an assist from her sister, Katie. The Trojans peppered the Indians with 15 shots in the first period and had 29 shots on goal after two periods.
Grigely added another goal in the second period while sophomore forward Anne Deliso made an outstanding individual effort to give Simsbury a 3-0 lead with 8:52 remaining in the game. Guilford (14-8) added a goal less than a minute later and had two power plays in the final seven minutes. But Simsbury stood tall to bring home the championship trophy. Junior goalie MacKenzie DuBois earned the win for Simsbury.
NOTE: Simsbury has won the last three SCC championships. Prior to joining the SCC, Simsbury won final two consecutive league titles in Central Connecticut Girls Hockey League (CCGHL) in 2011 and 2010.
Girls hockey state championship games
2014: Simsbury 3, Guilford 1
2013: New Canaan 2, Hall/Conard 0
2012: Hall/Conard 3, New Canaan 2, OT
2011: New Canaan 7, Ridgefield 2
2010: New Canaan 1, Darien 0
2009: Darien 3, New Canaan 2
2008: New Canaan 3, Greenwich 0
2007: New Canaan 2, Guilford 1, OT
2006: New Canaan 4, Ridgefield 1
2014 Connecticut state tournament
Tuesday, March 4
Hall/Conard 3, East Catholic/Glastonbury/South Windsor 1
Wednesday, March 5
Darien 7, Hamden 1
Guilford 3, New Canaan 2
Simsbury 9, Trumbull/St. Joseph 0
Thursday, March 6
Simsbury 5, Hall/Conard 1
Friday, March 7
Guilford 2, Darien 1, OT
Sunday, March 9
Simsbury 3, Guilford 1