SOUTHBURY -- Last spring, the Greenwich High School boys golf team followed an undefeated regular season by convincingly winning the FCIAC and state championships. Thursday, May 30. the Cardinals moved one giant step closer to achieving the impressive trifecta once again.

Greenwich has been the king of each course it's played this season and Thursday was no different, as it handled the unfamiliar Heritage Village Country Club on its way to a second straight FCIAC championship.

Receiving solid rounds from each player, the Cardinals carded a score of 312, seven shots better than runner-up Darien. New Canaan placed third (322), followed by Ridgefield (324) and Staples (330).

"It's a great feeling to win it two years in a row," said Greenwich senior Danny Guise, who shot a 5-over-par 76. "Winning it two straight years is something you remember."

With Greenwich winning the title by 21 shots, there wasn't much drama at last year's FCIAC Championships. Thursday was a different scenario. The Cardinals were only a few strokes ahead of New Canaan, Darien and Ridgefield with the final two groups still on the course.

"They put a scare into us today," GHS coach Jeff Santilli said. "It came down to the wire this time. It came down to the last two players and they stepped it up. Winning this title never gets old."

Junior Paul Pastore shot a 2-over-par 73, sophomore Derek Sudell carded an 80 and Robert Lemone finished with an 80 for the Cards.

Darien was paced by senior Kieran Suri, who shot an even-par 71 on the challenging course -- the day's lowest score. Though it's a relatively short course, the fairways at Heritage Village are narrow, making it especially important to hit it straight. Suri succeeded in that aspect, shooting a 33 on the front nine.

"I had a solid scrambling round," Suri said. "I got up and down on No. 12 and 13, which kept my round going. "It's a very tight course, and the back nine was pretty difficult. But I'm happy to end my senior year on the team this way."

Christian Ostberg shot a 78 for the Blue Wave. New Canaan received a round of 77 from senior Will Essigs, who won the Hap Halohan on Tuesday. Justin Clark shot a 78 for the Rams.

"It's hard to be happy when you shoot a 77 and had five birdies like I did today," Essigs said. "It's hard not having a practice round, but still, I felt I could have played better. There were a lot of blind shots out there, but I guess to hold it together and shoot a 77 was okay."

Pastore entered the tournament knowing he had to be at his best since the team is without injured senior Chris Pavelic.

"Since Chris didn't play, Danny and I knew we had to play well and we did this for Chris," Pastore said. "I knew it was going to be close and that I had to make some birdies coming in."

Knowing the course's dimensions, Pastore opted not to hit one driver all day.

"I knew I couldn't overpower it, so I hit a lot of three woods and two irons," he said.

Sudell rose to the occasion in his first appearance in the FCIAC Tournament.

"There were a little nerves out there for me, but I played in almost all the varsity matches this year, so that helped out a lot," Sudell said.

Led by John Collins' 79, Wilton placed sixth (341), Danbury finished seventh (342) and Trumbull was eighth (354). Stephen Colodny had Staples' best round (81).

"I expected us to do a little bit better, I have to examine the scores and see where we lost some strokes," Staples coach Tom Owen said. "Hopefully, this will humble us and get us ready for the state tournament."

Ridgefield's Sean Brady had the third best score of the day, posting a 74.

"As a senior, I'm happy to finish it off like this," Brady said. "Making a birdie putt on 18 with everyone watching was a cool way to end my round."

Danbury's Max Theodorakis shot a 35 on the front nine en route to shooting a 75.

"You really have to know where to hit it on this course," Theodorakis said. "I played well on the front nine, but the heat may have taken a toll on me. I enjoyed playing here though, I was impressed with it."

Indeed, Greenwich knows its mission isn't completed.

"We have won FCIACs two years in a row, now we want to win states two years in a row," Santilli said. "It's going to be a challenge."; 203-625-4423

FCIAC Golf Championships

At Heritage Village Country Club, par 71

Team scores: Greenwich 312; Darien 319; New Canaan 322; Ridgefield 324; Staples 330; Wilton 341; Danbury 342; Trumbull 354

Greenwich: Danny Guise 35-41-76; Paul Pastore 37-36-73; Robert Lemone 41-42-83; Derek Sudell 39-41-80.

Darien: Kieran Suri 33-38-71; Christian Ostberg 37-43-80; Sam Knowlton 37-47-84; Cameron Van de Graaf 36-48-84.

Staples: Stephen Colodny 39-42-81; Peter Richards 44-38-82; Ross Whelan 44-41-85; Andrew Felman 40-42-82.

Ridgefield: Dan Kile 43-43-86; Sean Brady 37-37-74; Hunter Tuccio 41-40-81; David Dobson 43-40-83.

Danbury: Max Theodorakis 35-40-75; Jonathan Pinto 42-42-84; Andy Stock 42-48-90; Avery Lord 47-46-93.

New Canaan: Will Essigs 39-38-77; Justin Clark 41-38-79; Mike Slattery 44-44-88; Kyle Finnican 41-41-82.

Wilton: John Collins 41-38-79; Scott Caggainello 40-44-84; Alex Birch 41-48-89; Sam Marsh 41-48-89.

Trumbull: Pat Adams 38-48-86; Brian Bach 41-51-92; Zac Parent 43-47-90; Pat Heeks 42-44-86.