Girls lacrosse Wildcats reclaim state Class A title

medals Saturday at SUNY-Cortland, senior captain Bekah Elmer ran to the stands and picked up a banner, then returned to her teammates and unfurled it.

It read "New York State Champions -- We're No. 1".

And no one could dispute that after the Wildcats completed its perfect 24-0 run to its first state title since 2003 with a hard-fought, 8-4 victory over Farmingdale in the championship game.

"It's very satisfying," said head coach Bob Elmer. "They (they players) came up with a list of goals at the beginning of the season. They reached all their goals."

Sarah Kuonen, the main offensive threat for the Wildcats throughout the weekend, said she was just part of a larger effort.

"It was a team effort all the way through, and everyone contributed," she said.

After a season where most of the Wildcats' games were decided by halftime, it had to sweat out much more in both of last weekend's games at Cortland, especially the final.

Farmingdale, the Section VIII champions from Long Island, did not let the fact that Kuonen scored twice in the game's first two minutes bother them.

Instead, it clamped down, taking away most of WG's open looks and shutting them out for more than 12 minutes, plenty of time to catch up and create some tension.

Yet after Janine Hillier's goal 3:58 into the game, the Wildcats would not allow anything else for the rest of the first half.

Displaying a potent combination of aggressiveness and stick skills, defenders Maggie Yackel, Nicole Perkins, Amanda Corso and Rachel Lasda proved so effective in the early going that the Dalers started forcing plays, leading to turnovers.

Also, midfielders like Elmer, Chrissie Hanley and Colleen Bubnack offered help on both ends, using their unmatched speed to catch up to the ball, then clear it out quickly.

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