Only one varsity boys lacrosse team team in the nation’s No. 1 hotspot for the lacrosse, the NY/NJ/CT tristate region, was able to accomplish what Darien did this past spring.

The Blue Wave finished unbeaten.

But DHS’s 23-0 record is not a first in program history. The 2005 Blue Wave also went 23-0.

Darien’s quest for perfection became realize when it defeated New Canaan 10-8 in the Connecticut Class M state title game on Saturday, June 14 at Brien McMahon High School.

It was quite a run for the Blue Wave. We caught up with one of the players who engineered it, senior goaltender Phil Huffard, who will play his college lacrosse at Yale University.

Now, here are Phil’s thoughts on the championship season.

huffard2What was the feeling like when the clock went to zeroes and Darien had finished off the win against New Canaan for the state championship?
It was a feeling that I will not soon forget. To have all of the hard work that your team has put in throughout the entire year pay off in a moment like is truly indescribable.

How does the feeling of being a state champion compare to what you thought it would be like?
Fortunately my sophomore year I was a member of the 2012 team that won the state championship, but getting that taste of victory made you want to do everything in your power to get back to that point and accomplish your ultimate goal again.

Obviously every time you win a championship it is a great feeling, but to win it as a senior and to cap only the second undefeated season in Darien history versus our rival New Canaan was a feeling that I could have never imagined getting to experience.

If you have to pinpoint two or three keys to the team’s run to winning the title, what would they be?
The main key to our teams success all year long was our team first attitude.  Every player from top to bottom put their focus of the teams success above their own, which allowed us to stick together through the tough times and come out on top.

No one was focused on individual stats or awards, it was all about the team.  it didn’t matter if you were the one to make the good play, as long as someone made it.

What are one or two plays during the state title run that will stick in your mind and that you may tell friends in college that you meet who are not aware about what the team did?
One play that will always stick out in my mind from this season was in the FCIAC semi-final game against New Canaan, we were down by three goals with under eight minutes to play and came all the way back to tie it.

Then in overtime, one of our midfielders, Ian Burgoyne, inverted the ball behind the net and then proceeded to dodge and score sending us to the FCIAC finals and kept our undefeated season alive.

What will you be doing lacrosse-wise this summer to prepare for the start of fall lacrosse in college?
I will be playing for Jimmy Southside in the Sound Shore Men’s Lacrosse League.  On top of that I will be working out at Bodytuning in Darien three days a week.

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Posted In: Connecticut, Player's perspective

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