It took them more than 30 years, but the 49th time was the charm for the Auburn boys lacrosse team as they ended a losing streak against state powerhouse West Genesee that dated all the way back to their first meeting, in 1976.
The Maroons (5-1, 9-2) accomplished this feat by beating the Wildcats 5-4 Tuesday night at West Genesee in a game that was controlled by Auburn's defense.
"We got a super group of kids and they've been working hard all season long," Auburn coach Steve Crosby said. "We continued to execute and things came together for us. Our goalie and defense have been doing a great job all year long and continued those efforts tonight. I'm very proud of them."
Right out of the gates, Auburn showed they were ready to play as senior Chris Clifford scored the game's first goal just 45 seconds into the contest. As the hometown crowd looked on in disbelief, it was evident that they were in store for a long night
After the quick score, both defenses took over for the remainder of the quarter as neither team found the net for the last 11 minutes.
WG's defensive trio of Ben Waldron, Jack Conboy and Joe Fazio did an excellent job of shutting down the Maroons and keeping the damage to a minimum. On the other side, senior captain Ryan Button and junior Brendan O'Connor were defensive forces for Auburn and didn't let the Wildcats near the goal.
That defensive effort was constant for most of the second period as Auburn continued to frustrate WG. The Wildcats consistently turned the ball over as they played an all-around sloppy first half and were just not into the game at all, getting out hustled and out muscled on every play.
The Maroons, however, were running on all cylinders as scored two goals in less then a minute halfway through the quarter and captured a 3-0 lead. Auburn controlled the face-offs as they won all but two in the first half and played patiently on offense.