Greenwich football to play at Cardinal Stadium but without QB O’Neil

Greenwich High School's athletic field and bleachers at Cardinal Stadium as seen from West Putnam Avenue on May 27, 2011.

The Greenwich High School football team doesn’t have to worry about finding an alternate site to play its home games.
The team will open its season Friday against Ridgefield at the friendly confines of Cardinal Stadium, as the field and bleachers have been cleared for use after two months of uncertainty.

Greenwich High closed Cardinal Stadium in late July after soil samples extracted between the parking lot of the campus and the school’s athletic fields revealed elevated level of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). The discovery was made after the school broke ground on a $29 million auditorium and music instruction project.

The stadium’s artificial turf field and track was opened in time for the football team’s first day of training camp on Aug. 22, but the bleachers, the grass areas surrounding the stadium and the school’s six other fields remained closed. The school began discussing alternate sites for the Cardinals’ home football games, but the bleachers on both sides of the field can now be used, after passing state tests.

The football team, cross country team, field hockey squad, and boys and girls soccer teams have shared Cardinal Stadium for practice. The girls varsity soccer team is the first team that will host a game at Cardinal Stadium this fall. Greenwich will play Trinity Catholic in its season-opener on Tuesday at 5 p.m.

The football team’s game against Ridgefield Friday is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.

O’NEIL TO MISS OPENER — It looks like Greenwich will be without it starting quarterback Liam O’Neil against Ridgefield.

O’Neil, a junior, received a helmet-to-helmet hit while scrambling out of the pocket in the team’s scrimmage against Masuk.

While sliding to the ground, the Cardinals’ 6-foot-1 signal caller was hit by Masuk defender Shawn Flynn. Flynn was penalized 15 yards on the play for leading with his helmet. O’Neil may be out Week 2 against Bassick. Senior Chris Daly, who has shown good speed out of the pocket, will run the Cardinals’ offense.

Watch video of the play here:

– David Fierro

David Fierro