Constantly, the Westhill boys lacrosse team has strove to take the next step from being merely good to something a lot better.
The 2008 season fit that mode -- again. The Warriors were good enough to 12-8, but still found itself stopped in the Section III Class C quarterfinals by eventual champion Skaneateles.
Despite the departure of nine seniors, Westhill has enough talent back for another winning season and took a strong first step last Tuesday night, crushing Fulton 18-2 at Solvay's Earl Hadley Stadium.
Other than a first-period goal allowed, Westhill controlled the ball much of the first half and seemed to score at will against at porous Red Raider defense. It was 12-1 by the time they reached the break, and the Warriors got a chance to use everyone on the roster.
At the forefront, Dan Eipp strung together six goals, a new career high, and added one assist. Sal Valenti, Kyle Nicholas and Tim Burgess each scored twice, with Valenti getting four assists, Nicholas three assists and Burgess two assists.
Dylan Tripodi was close behind, earning two goals and one assist, as Tris Nicola got one goal and three assists. Austin Webb, Marshall Kise and John Legnetto also took turns scoring.
Westhill returned to Solvay's "Pit" Thursday night and proved quite impressive against East Syracuse-Minoa, ripping the Spartans 11-4.
Quickly, the Warriors took control, leading 4-1 after one period and stretching out that margin over the next three periods through patience and strong defensive work. In particular, goalie Mark McAnaney stood out, stopping 15 of the 19 shots he faced.
Meanwhile, Burgess put together four goals and one assist, with Tripod contributing three goals and one assist and Nicola also scoring three times. Eipp backed up his single tally with three assists, with Sal Valenti getting one assist.
If the weather allows it, Westhill (2-0) will be at home for the first time on Tuesday, facing Cazenovia, before making a Thursday-night trip to Marcellus.