Live Friday: New Canaan vs. Darien girls ice hockey

If the second meeting between the Darien and New Canaan girls ice hockey teams is anything like the first, there’s going to be one heck of a show on Friday night at the Darien Rink.

The rivals, who are the top-ranked teams in both the FCIAC and the state, will clash at 6:40 p.m. live in HD on the HAN Network. You can watch the game at HAN.Network or any of our affiliate websites.

FCIAC Standings
HAN Network: Girls Ice Hockey
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Both teams are 11-1 overall this season and the Darien Blue Wave leads the FCIAC with a 10-0 mark, just ahead of the New Canaan Rams, who are 8-1.

Darien won the first contest with New Canaan, 3-2, on Jan. 16, but it wasn’t easy. The Wave dominated the first two periods, when they built a 2-0 lead on goals from Elise Maro and Cassidy Schiff.

Darien outshot New Canaan 26-4 during the first 30 minutes, and the lead could’ve been greater if not for the play of the Rams’ freshman goalie Amanda Hill, who made 25 saves in the game and stopped all 15 shots she faced in the second period.

In the third period, the Rams turned the tables and had a 14-2 advantage in shots, tying the game 2-2 on goals from senior co-captains Kate McMahon and Catherine Granito.

Darien senior co-captain Georgia Cassidy responded with the go-ahead goal with 3:21 remaining, and the Wave held on for the win.

Cassidy is the Darien’s program’s all-time leading scorer and has racked up 31 points this season on 21 goals and 10 assists. She is closing in on 200 points for her career.

Senior Marissa Baker, who has seven goals and six assists, and senior Schuyler van den Broek, who has seven goals and eight assists, are also big weapons for the Wave.

Defensively, Darien is led by senior Chandler Kirby, with strong support from senior Katie Zaro and junior Courtney Lowe, while junior Emily Giannunzio has been solid in goal.

New Canaan features senior tri-captains Catherine Granito, Mia Carroll and Katie McMahon.

Granito recently became the fourth player in state history to reach 200 points in her career and she enters the showdown against Darien with 132 goals and 79 assists for 211 points. This season, Granito has collected 27 points on 14 goals and 13 assists.

Granito centers the Rams’ first line, which has featured top-notch performances from sophomores Gianna Bruno and Brooke Deane.

Carroll is New Canaan’s defensive star and her veteran leadership has helped with a young blue line that includes sophomore Liz McCarthy and freshman Jess Eccleston.

Both Darien and New Canaan have scored victories against top opponents during the past week. Last Friday in Newington, the Rams topped defending state co-champ East Catholic, 4-2, while on Wednesday, the Wave won, 8-2, over Ridgefield, the third-place team in the FCIAC.

How to watch

The HAN Network live broadcast of the game can be seen on our homepage, HAN.Network , and on affiliate websites including . The stream usually begin 10 minutes before the event is scheduled to begin. Rob Adams and crew join you five minutes before the contest begins. Keep in mind that start times are subject to change. Keep an eye on our Twitter feed for the latest updates.

It’s easy to watch HAN Network broadcasts on your smart televisions or with Apple TV and Google’s Chromecast.

Upcoming games and more

The HAN Network’s winter season schedule includes many FCIAC teams in boys and girls ice hockey, boys and girls basketball and wrestling. Some facility restraints have prevented us from covering swimming and gymnastics so far this season. We’ll also be covering much of the FCIAC postseason playoffs and most championships.

We’ll have a boys-girls ice hockey doubleheader on Monday with Ridgefield vs. New Canaan girls followed by Fairfield vs. Darien boys. On Thursday, we'll have live coverage of the FCIAC Indoor Track & Field Championships in New Haven. Check out the complete broadcast schedule here.

The HAN Network, formerly known as Hersam Acorn Newspapers, is the exclusive FCIAC broadcast partner through the spring of 2018. HAN Network’s broadcasting division replaced with a new focus on live video streams of high school athletics along with the Network’s news and lifestyle programming.

Along with Connecticut high school sports contests, HAN broadcasts a daily news program, Coffee Break, focusing on southwestern Connecticut at 11 a.m. and a sports talk show, Nutmeg Sports, Monday-Wednesday. You can watch all the shows at live.HAN.Network or on demand atlive.HAN.Network/han-on-demand/.

You can check out more of the winter schedule at this link. And be sure to follow the HAN Network on Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates.