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Darien Blue Wave moves up to No. 2 in state football poll

When Darien’s football team rallied back from a 21-point deficit on Thanksgiving and won the FCIAC championship with a thrilling 28-21 overtime victory over rival and perennial power New Canaan, it also resulted in a bit of shuffling in the upper half of the most recent GameTimeCT/New Haven Register Top 10 Football Poll heading into the state playoffs.

Coach Rob Trifone’s Darien Blue Wave improved to 11-0, it moved up one spot from the previous Top 10 poll and is now ranked second behind Southington (10-0), which retained its top ranking by receiving 23 of the No. 1 votes from the 28 polling media members.

Darien received three first-place votes.

New Canaan, which was No. 2 in the previous poll, fell three spots down to No. 5 and will take a 9-1 record into the CIAC Class L-Large Playoffs.

Darien and New Canaan are both in the Class L-Large division and the possibility exists for a rematch in the state championship, contingent on both of them advancing with semifinal victories.

Top-seeded Darien hosts Naugatuck (9-2) at 1 p.m., while second-seeded New Canaan entertains third-seeded Wethersfield (11-0) at 2 p.m. on Saturday afternoon. The championship will be played either Dec. 12 or Dec. 13 at a site and time to be announced.

Newtown (12-0) is No. 3 and Shelton (11-0) is No. 4 in the most recent state poll as they each received a first-place vote and moved up one spot from the previous poll.

After New Canaan, the next three in the Top 10 are Windsor (10-0), Ledyard (11-0) and Wethersfield.

FCIAC member St. Joseph improved to 9-2 with its 49-30 victory over Trumbull on Thanksgiving and maintained its No. 9 ranking. Ansonia (10-0) completes the Top 10.

St. Joseph is seeded second in the Class M-Small division and will host third-seeded Ellington/Somers (9-2) at Trumbull High School’s Jerry McDougall Stadium this Saturday at 2 p.m.

St. Joseph’s Cadets have won three straight games since their 41-14 loss at home to New Canaan on Nov. 1. Their only other loss was at Darien, 21-17, on Oct. 2.

This year there are 32 total teams playing in the state playoffs – four teams in each of the eight divisions.

No other teams from the FCIAC are in the state playoffs and there are no teams from the FCIAC among the other 16 teams in the “Others receiving votes” category in the Top 10 state poll.

Quarterback Tim Graham led the Darien Blue Wave to the FCIAC championship last week. (Darien Athletic Foundation Photo)

Quarterback Tim Graham led the Darien Blue Wave to the FCIAC championship last week. (Darien Athletic Foundation Photo)

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