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Welcome to the New Haven Register high school sports blog where our talented staff of Chris Hunn, Joe Morelli, Dan Nowak and Mike Pucci will keep you up to date on everything to do with high school sports in Connecticut. Mike Pucci's Gridiron Glory blog for high school football remains. We hope you enjoy and feel free to join in the conversation.

Friday, August 14, 2009


Larry Vieira, who spent 26 seasons building the Branford boys’ hockey team into a Division II powerhouse, was named the new Darien head coach on Thursday.
Vieira replaces Russ Foster who stepped down as Darien coach after 10 seasons.
The last time Darien won a state title was in 1969. The Blue Wave will certainly have a fair shot to get back there with Vieira at the helm. Vieira demands discipline but also knows how to develop players. He takes it as a personal challenge to improve players with each passing practice and each passing game.
“This is a great situation, an exciting opportunity for me,” said Vieira, who stepped down at Branford last spring for personal reasons. “I’m looking forward to the challenge of coaching a Division I hockey program.”
Vieira spent 26 seasons as the Hornets’ coach and led them to the Southern Connecticut Conference Division II regular-season titles in 2000, 2003 and 2005. They finished as runners-up in the SCC tournament in 1999, 2007 and 2009. Branford made the state playoffs 20 times and reached the quarterfinals 10 times, semifinals four times and won the 1988 CIAC Division II championship.
Vieira finished with a 297-223-9 overall record and was 241-136-5 against Division II competition. The Hornets were 16-7-1 last season and advanced to the CIAC Division II quarterfinals where they lost to SCC foe Amity.
In May, Adolph Brink stepped down as Fairfield High boys’ hockey coach to replace Vieira at Branford. Brink also coached at Fairfield Prep in the 1990s.
Branford and Darien join two other schools who have named new hockey hockey coaches the past five months.
Ralph Shaw is the new boys' hockey coach at North Branford and Mark Andruzzi is the new boys' hockey coach at Hand.


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