Skaneateles volleyball fights past Cazenovia again

One moment, the Cazenovia girls volleyball team was on its way to taking the lead on Skaneateles and avenging two seasons worth of frustration at the expense of that other group of Lakers on Senior Night Wednesday at Buckley Gym.

The next moment, Skaneateles was in front - and on its way to another four-game victory, matching the result from their first encounter on Sept. 24 and gaining the role as favorite for that decisive state Class C qualifying match between the same two sides on Nov. 5 at Cicero-North Syracuse.

One game - and one stunning spurt by Skaneateles - turned the match around and deflated the home crowd. They had come to honor 10 seniors - Lizzy Reed, Chelsea Lauria, Alexis Markowski, Lindsay Easterly, Hannah Koennecke, Melanie Arehart, Brodie Shephard, Audrey Bowers, Miya Uchida and Emily Gustafson - that made up the bulk of Cazenovia's roster.

All the ceremonies seemed to cause a slow start for the home side. Skaneateles never trailed once in the opening game, serving and defending well as it prevailed 25-19. But Cazenovia turned things around in the second game, leading on all but one occasion (at 7-6) and breezing to a 25-17 win as it evened the match.

Then came the third game. For much of it, Cazenovia carried over its good work from the previous game, serving with precision and providing all kinds of power. It led 21-11 at one point, and though Skaneateles stirred a bit, it still gained a 24-18 edge and was about to move up 2-1 in games.

But Cazenovia never got that game point. Skaneateles won the serve back, and then Gabby Eckles (who injured her ankle earlier in the match) offered up a series of powerful serves, leading to six straight points. Even though Cazenovia called two time-outs, it could not stop the momentum as Skaneateles took the lead, then claimed the victory 26-24.

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