Having started 3-0 in the comfortable confines of home, the Cicero-North Syracuse boys basketball team now traveled, to see if its good play would carry over.
First, the Northstars faced a big test last Tuesday night, at West Genesee -- and passed it, overcoming several offensive droughts to beat the Wildcats 57-52 in overtime.
Wanting to run, CNS instead found itself stuck in a half-court game of WG's liking. At one point in the first half, the Northstars went more than seven minutes without a field goal.
By the early portion of the third quarter, CNS trailed by eight, 31-23, and needed someone to get hot.
Pat Corbin gladly accepted the burden. He poured in 10 points during that period, helping to make up most of the deficit, and the Northstars got further help when the Wildcats missed more than half their free throws.
The pace slowed again in the fourth quarter, but now it was the Northstars' turn to play shut-down defense, limiting WG to one field goal for much of that period and going up, 48-45, on back-to-back jumpers by Laquan James.
But with 19 seconds left, Casey Reale, scoreless all night, hit a 3-pointer to tie it, 48-48, and when Sean Moonan's game-winning 3-point attempt fell short, the two sides went to overtime.
Moonan would foul out, but CNS held serve until, with 1:37 left, Corbin struck again, a 3-pointer from the top of the key to break a 52-52 tie. In the last seconds, Corbin clinched it by making a steal and setting up Steve Jensen's free throws.
In all, Corbin had 20 points, while Moonan got 11 points and James added 10 points. Chris Cruz (16 points) and Kevin Wadach (13 points) led WG's attack.
CNS will be back at home Friday night to meet Oswego, just before a Sunday trip to Glens Falls (annual home of the state final four) to face Albany-area power Bishop Maginn.