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Girls soccer Warriors upend CBA; B'ville next

When the month of October started, there was some question as to whether the Liverpool girls soccer team, with all of its talent and pre-season hype, was going to even make the Section III Class AA playoffs.

Well, the Warriors made it -- and now every possible opponent is quite worried.

Showing what it could do when at full strength and in a proper frame of mind, the Warriors took out top seed Christian Brothers Academy last Thursday night at Henninger High School's Sunnycrest Field, beating the Brothers 2-1.

Liverpool's 8-8 regular-season mark meant that it had the lowest spot of the eight teams that made it to the AA tournament. However, that would turn out to be an enormous break.

CBA was the top seed even though, as a non-member of the CNY Counties League, it had played most of its games against Class A foes in the OHSL Freedom division.

Not only that, but the Brothers were forced to give up its home field of Alibrandi Stadium for the playoff game due to early-week rains and a football game on Thursday.

Digesting all this, Liverpool then went out and ate up CBA. Mostly, it did so with defense, as the back line 0f Amanda Pollock, Christina Franchesi, Carolyn Barry and Alicia Vollmer took turns defending high-scoring forwards M.E. Lapham and Alexis Koval, keeping them off the board for the entire evening.

Meanwhile, Liverpool's deep, diverse attack would break through in the first half, as sophomore Gabby Racines took a feed from Jessica Stagnitta and fired a shot past CBA goalie Ashley Walsh into the net.

The Brothers would tie it in the second half when Sarah Paulus connected on a header, but the Warriors went back in front when Vollmer's pass found Danielle Gannon, and Gannon fired it past Walsh for what proved to be the game-winner.

Liverpool advanced to Wednesday's AA semifinal against no. 5 seed Baldwinsville, who took out defending champion West Genesee 4-0 in an impressive quarterfinal effort.

Ironically, this game will also be at West Genesee, starting at 8 p.m. The winner will face Cicero-North Syracuse or Auburn in the championship game.

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