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It’s Dec. 1 and what better way to kick off our annual offseason staple — our Preseason Player’s Perspectives — than with a team coming off its first-ever state championship.
We’re talking about Greenwich, which took the Connecticut Class L crown by beating rival Staples 13-10 in the title game to finish 20-3 during a season in which its only losses were to unbeaten Class M state champ Darien (twice) and Fairfield Prep. The Cardinals also picked up out-of-state wins against CHSAA Nassau/Suffolk AAA champ Chaminade, New York Class C state champ Bronxville and Section 1 (NY) Class A champion Lakeland/Panas.
Speaking of firsts, let’s take a first look at how Greenwich looks heading into the 2015 season with Providence College-bound junior midfielder Will Perry. As you’ll see, the Cardinals once again have some huge non-state encounters, including a new addition in Long Island power Smithtown East, the defending Suffolk County Class A champions.
Greenwich coach Scott Bulkley describes Perry, pictured at left, as “one of the hardest working players I have ever worked with.” Perry is an outstanding shooter with a high lacrosse IQ.
Now, here are Will’s perspectives on the upcoming season.
What have you been doing to get ready for the season?
Ever since the 2014 season ended the team has been lifting together, running and working on areas of their game that need to be fixed.
Personally, I have been getting together with a group of guys three times a week to shoot and work on plays for the season.
How does your schedule look, what games are you looking forward to most, and who are some of your scrimmages against?
The schedule that we have ahead of us is going to be the most challenging schedule Greenwich High has ever faced. Obviously as a team we look forward to the games versus Darien and Ridgefield every year.
But this year the three biggest regular season games are going to be versus a very good New Canaan team, Chaminade and a new addition to our schedule, Smithtown East.
What players on your team do you think will surprise some people this season?
After last year’s state championship run we lost a lot of seniors who were terrific players and leaders. With this being true it gives a chance for players to step up and make a name for themselves.
Everyone knows the talent of our captains Decker Curran (midfield), Mike Sullivan (FOGO) and Tommy Rogan (goalie), but we have plenty of players who are getting overlooked.
After starting for three years at defense with multiple D-I and D-III defensemen surrounding him, it will be Griffin Tiedy’s first year of being the No. 1 defenseman on our team. I think he will excel and be one of the top players in CT this year.
Two more players who are getting overlooked are John Tooher (midfield) and Mike Sands (attack). John is a senior who is very shifty and can make anyone on the field miss. He will play well with the first line of midfielders. Mike is a junior who just recently transferred from the prep school Choate to Greenwich. He has a very good IQ for the sport and a great shot.
What do you think the strength of your team will be this year?
This year I believe we have the best goalie and the best faceoff men in the FCIAC and the CIAC. With this being true, it will setup opportunities for our strength of offense to take over games.
Last year, we lost four senior defenseman who all played. That will leave space for new players to shine, and I think we have the talent for that.
How do you view the race in your league and who do you think some of the contending teams will be?
This season the majority of the teams in the FCIAC lost a lot of seniors. Although this is true, teams like New Canaan, Darien, and Ridgefield always have people to fill those spaces and so do we.
Last year those three teams and Greenwich were the four best teams in the FCIAC, I believe that won’t change this year.
All these teams are going to have a chance to win the championship this year. It just comes down to who wants it the most.
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