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Hockey Wildcats roar to third straight sectional title

Still perfect, still overwhelming the opposition, still recording shutouts - and still the Section III Division I champions.

That would be the West Genesee ice hockey team, who now own three consecutive titles in the wake of Saturday night's 4-0 victory over Baldwinsville in the Division I final at Allyn Arena in Skaneateles.

Both of the last two championships have come at the Bees' expense, WG repeating what it did a season ago when it toppled B'ville 3-2 at the Syracuse War Memorial.

Though the setting changed back to Skaneateles (where WG beat Ithaca in the 2008 sectional final), the result remained exactly the same as Zach Lewis notched the biggest hat trick of his career to lead the way.

It also marked WG's third shutout over B'ville in as many outings this season. Way back on Dec. 1 at Shove Park in Camillus, it ended 6-0, and the rematch on Jan. 15 at Lysander Arena saw the Wildcats prevail 4-0.

B'ville, who beat Oswego 3-2 in the other semifinal as WG was bashing Liverpool 8-1, set out to ruin the Wildcats' season-long domination as a large crowd flocked to Allyn Arena (following a 24-hour snow postponement) to see what would happen.

The first period gave B'ville some hope. Despite constant WIldcat pressure and possession of the puck, it could not convert against Bees goaltender Mark Miller, who was coming off a 39-save outing in the semifinal win over Oswego.

As long as it stayed at even strength, WG had to work harder - but once it got some power-play opportunities in the second period, the Wildcats took over once more.

Twice, it beat Miller for goals, pushing its way to a 2-0 lead, and it would convert twice more in the third period. Three of those goals came from man advantages, and the other occurred just as another B'ville penalty was ending.

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