DARIEN -- Fairfield Warde saw its three-game win streak snapped with a 2-0 loss to host Darien on Wednesday.
Not surprisingly, a powerhouse like Darien managed to dominate every facet of the game. What was surprising was that the Wave let the Mustangs hang around for so long. For the first 50 minutes of play, the two teams were locked in a scoreless tie.
"Wins don't have to be pretty, and we came away with one, but we started very flat footed," Darien Mo Minicus said. "And to Warde's credit, they came out on fire and beat us in the first half. We made it hard for ourselves, and Warde did a great job intercepting our passes. Luckily, it was only 0-0 at the half."
While coach Minicus may have felt that her team was not clicking on all cylinders, it was evident that Darien was controlling the pace of the game and maintaining possession. In the first half, Darien was awarded eight penalty corners whereas Warde had none. For the game as a whole, Darien maintained a healthy 12-1 differential in penalty corners.
Likewise, the Wave outshot the Mustangs by a staggering 23-3 margin.
Still, the game remained remarkably close. On the Mustangs sole penalty corner early in the second half, a low shot by Megan Hines came oh-so-close to getting by Darien goalie Danica Hornick, who was able to make the save.
The second half was a different story for Darien.
"I think we were over-thinking everything in the first half," Darien captain Lexie Perticone said. "We knew the first half was not our best. We really just wanted to win so we came out with a fire that we didn't have in the first half."
Darien was finally able to punch through with 9:34 remaining in the game. At long last, the Wave converted a penalty corner when Lexie Perticone fed Huber at the top of the circle who blasted a zinger past Warde's goalie Katie Stepsis.
Four minutes later, the Wave added another when Erika Osherow deftly crossed the ball to Claire Culliton, who put it away.
While defeat is never easy, Warde was generally happy with its ability to keep Darien at bay for so long.
"Katie did very well there in goal, and our defense was good at keeping them out of the circle," Warde coach Jodie Shannon said.
Darien 2, fairfield warde 0
FAIRFIELD WARDE 0 0 --0
DARIEN 0 2 --2
Records: Fairfield Warde 6-3-1; Darien 10-1.
Goals: D -- Kat Huber, Claire Culliton. Assists: D -- Lexie Perticone, Erika Osherow. Goalies: FW -- Katie Stepsis (12 saves); D -- Danica Hornick (6). Shots: FW -- 3; D -- 23.