Properly tested throughout the spring, the Fayetteville-Manlius girls lacrosse team was ready to see where it stood through a course of four big contests in an eight-day span, two of them against Baldwinsville.
The Hornets immediately gained an upper hand on the Bees last Tuesday night, at Pelcher-Arcaro Stadium, hanging on down the stretch to beat the Bees 13-11.
Prior to that, B'ville had not a lost a game since returning from a spring-break trip to England and carried an 8-2 mark, ready to further establish itself as West Genesee's prime rival for the Class A title.
Knowing all this, F-M tore right into B'ville on all fronts in the first half, staying physical and aggressive on the defensive side and converting enough to gain a 7-3 lead going into the break.
The Bees would start winning more draws and ground balls in the second half, leading to a series of goals. Every time that would happen, though, F-M had a ready answer as it continued to produce timely scoring plays.
Shannon McHugh and Jenn Williams stood at the forefront as McHugh earned four goals and Williams added three goals and one assist.
Morgan Axenfeld found the net twice as Mary Elizabeth Klepper, Emily Pierson, Meg Helmer and Jackie Keleher also scored.
In defeat, the Bees' Natalie Chrismer had three goals as Quincey Spagnoletti, Katie VanDeValk and Meghan Haney each found the net twice. But Hornet defenders Ali O'Neil, Caroline Helmer and Jessica Hotchkiss held B'ville's top scorer, Kara Moschetti, without a point all night.
Beginning a busy weekend, the Hornets took on Cicero-North Syracuse Friday night and again played strong defense as it beat the Northstars 8-6.
Dictating the game's tempo, F-M never allowed CNS into the running game it wanted to establish. F-M led 5-3 at halftime and stayed patient, even though Northstars goalie Alex Gale made 16 saves to keep her team close.