Each of the previous five times the West Genesee girls lacrosse team went to SUNY-Cortland for the state Class A final four, it came home with the big prize.
But the Wildcats' quest to make it six titles fell short in last Friday's state Class A semifinal against Farmingdale, who gained a measure of payback by beating WG 10-9 in overtime.
"We were not on top of our game," Bre Hudgins said. "But we lost to a great team. They (Farmingdale) came ready to play."
These same two sides had met in the 2008 state final on that same SUNY-Cortland turf, with the Wildcats prevailing 13-12. The rematch would prove just as close -- but have a different conclusion.
Neither side scored in the game's first 10 minutes, the defenses dominating until Morgan Corso converted off a feed from Bre Hudgins.
With the game tied 1-1, Maria DiFato and Karlyn Tupper scored 14 seconds apart, and WG would keep that lead the rest of the first half. Tupper and Hudgins would add tallies, and the Wildcats took a 5-3 advantage to the break.
Farmingdale caught up early in the second half at 6-6. DiFato put the Wildcats back in front, and despite long possessions on both sides, it would stay scoreless for more than 13 minutes, which set up a wild finish.
DiFato broke the long drought with 4:13 left, doubling the Wildcats' margin to 8-6, and the Dalers called a time-out. From that point forward, Hudgins said, Farmingdale would dominate on the draws, causing much of what followed.
"Usually, we are good on the draws, and that affected the outcome," she said.
Indeed, Farmingdale would win back-to-back draws, and Melanie Raso would land two goals in a span of 43 seconds, the latter coming with 1:44 to play to tie it 8-8.