All through last week's action, the Marcellus girls volleyball team got reminded of the hill still in front of them as it lost to both of the OHSL Liberty division's top sides.
First, the Mustangs hosted unbeaten, first-place Skaneateles and appeared to have the rival Lakers in trouble -- only to surrender that advantage and fall in four games.
When Marcellus took the opening game 26-24, fending off game points to do so, it appeared, at least for a moment, that the home team had reclaimed some equality, and even a 25-21 defeat in the second game didn't discourage all that much.
But the third game proved crucial. Both sides had chances to close out the game until, at 25-25, Skaneateles inched in front, then prevailed 27-25. Stricken, the Mustangs lost the fourth game 25-19 and the match ended.
Nicole Fletcher hurt the Lakers with 11 kills and nine blocks. Becca Eddy contributed 10 kills and eight assists as Devan Landers got five kills and four blocks. Samantha Vulcano had 26 assists. For Skaneateles, Ryan Merle led the way with seven kills, seven blocks and four aces.
Then came the Mustangs' Friday trip to Buckley Gym to face Cazenovia, and that other group of Lakers -- and much the same thing happened in another four-game loss.
Again, Marcellus took the opener, this time 25-22. Again, the Mustangs would not win another game as Cazenovia dominated the second game 25-10, then took the next two games by scores of 25-19 and 25-20.
Vulcano had 19 assists, adding five kills,t he same number as Eddy, with Fletcher getting six kills and Kim Duck adding four kills and three aces. Chelsea Lauria led Cazenovia with 20 assists, five kills and five aces as teammate Sarah Race added 10 kills and Megan Robinson finished with 14 assists.