In racing out to a 6-1 start, the Cicero-North Syracuse boys lacrosse team rarely had to encounter an opponent of equal or greater caliber.
The one time it did, though, resulted in defeat -- to Auburn, on April 6. When the two sides met again two weeks later at Holland Stadium, it ended the same way as the Maroons, with ferocious defense, beat the Northstars 7-3.
CNS got off to a nice start, grabbing a 2-1 lead in the first quarter. However, from that point forward the game belonged to Auburn's back line, which never let the Northstars accomplish much, even when it got close to the net.
Only the fine effort of CNS's own defense kept things tight, as Auburn only led, 6-3, through three periods. But that margin proved enough.
Scott Slater had two of the Northstars' three goals, while Sean McCaffery had the other. Mike Debottis added an assist. Brian Pitonzo had a fine effort in goals, stopping 16 of the 23 direct shots he faced as Andrew Chadderdon and Connor Entemann led Auburn, each with two goals and one assist.
Meanwhile, Liverpool's solid start continued last Tuesday when it put together a 12-3 victory over Rome Free Academy.
In what had to qualify as a steady effort, the Warriors (5-1) had three goals in each period, while its defense blanked the Black Knights in both the first and third quarters to gain its comfortable margin.
Individually, the balance showed, too, as Matt Savlov, Devin Clegg and Joe Corapi each produced three-goal hat tricks. Chris Spencer earned two goals and one assist as Ethan VanMarter also converted. Austin Hope and Mike Mahardy had two assists apiece.
As this went on, the Liverpool girls lacrosse team, in its only game this week, went to RFA and needed a big second half to get away from the Black Knights in a 17-7 decision.
For 25 minutes, Liverpool (5-3) had to worry as RFA's Erin Thomas continually abused the Warriors' defense, earning four goals and two assists.
So it went to the second half 6-6 -- but once the Warriors started winning draws on a regular basis, it picked RFA's defense apart.
Allison Flood had four goals and three assists, with Kathleen Conese also finding the net four times. Ashleigh Caruso and Anna Daucher each scored twice, with Morgan Kline, Kayla DeAngelis and Brianna Mancini earning single goals. Nina Tassone had three assists and Morgan Beaty got two assists.