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CNS reclaims AA softball title from Liverpool

Even with its relative youth, the Cicero-North Syracuse softball team has quite a good collective memory - especially when it comes to encounters with Liverpool.

The Northstars remembered how the Warriors took the Section III Class AA championship from them a year ago. It also remembered how Liverpool came from behind to beat them 5-4 in nine innings a month ago.

So when the two rivals clashed again in the 2010 edition of the Class AA final at the Gillette Road complex Monday night, CNS utilized all that it had learned from those previous disappointments and beat Liverpool 6-1.

"This year was our time," CNS pitcher Sarah Salamone said. "We've wanted this from the beginning of the season, and we knew that we could beat Liverpool."

It had to be the Northstars' time, just based on the calendar. It has won sectional titles each of the last four even-numbered years, dating back to 2004, with Liverpool prevailing in the odd-numbered years. Combined, they've won the last 10 sectional crowns.

Salamone's solid pitching had a lot to do with this outcome. So did the defense around her, which was prominent from the first inning onward.

Liverpool got its only run in the top of the first when, with two out and two runners in scoring position, Beth Lamison, hero of the last encounter with CNS, singled to left.

Emily Dumas easily raced home - but Tiffany Sampere got thrown out by eighth-grade shortstop Amy Van Hooven trying to score as Sam Cirillo applied the tag.

CNS tied it in the bottom of the third. With two out, Van Hooven doubled, and after Brittany Paul walked, Jenn Huff singled up the middle to score Van Hooven.

It remained 1-1 in the fourth, despite Emily Dumas hitting a leadoff double. Dumas moved to third on a groundout, but on Lamison's grounder Lindsay Flanagan (who missed the semifinals against Oswego due to illness) threw home - and Dumas was tagged out.

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