Liverpool girls soccer ties CNS, 1-1

Playing for the second time this fall, the Cicero-North Syracuse and Liverpool girls soccer teams did not settle things on Thursday afternoon, playing to a 1-1 draw.

With the Section III Class AA playoffs loomings, both the Northstars and Warriors were in the midst of preparing their respective challenges to defending champion Baldwinsville.

As such, their head-to-head meeting featured lots of strong defensive play, especially during a 0-0 first half where Liverpool had more chances, but could not convert.

During the second half, both teams would find the net. Courtney Szczesniak scored for Liverpool off a feed from Kathleen Conese, while CNS countered with Rachel Bowles earning the goal and Taylor D'Alfonso getting the assist.

And it would stay even through the rest of regulation, plus overtime as Chelsea Dunay got 10 saves for the Northstars and her counterpart, Noel Peck, earned six saves.

CNS was in need of a good effort, having gone out of league play last Monday to take a 1-0 loss to Christian Brothers Academy at Alibrandi Stadium.

These two teams had not met since last year's wild, snow-filled Class AA semifinal, won by the Brothers in overtime. Here, the snow was not present and no overtime was required, but the result was the same.

For much of the night, the Brothers attacked and kept the ball in CNS's end. That did not work for a while, as Dunay was sensational, recording 15 saves.

Only once was Dunay unable to keep a ball in front of her -- when, in the first half, Caitlin McConnell pushed home the game's only goal.

Liverpool, meanwhile, had beaten Auburn 3-1 on Tuesday night, getting all the offense it needed in the first half and overcoming Katie Tonzi's goal to pull clear in the late going.

Kim Murphy, Nikki Liadka and Julia Bruno each had one goal, with Szczesniak joining Liadka in the assist column. Liverpool, in all, took 15 shots, three times the Maroons' total.

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